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Full text of "The hunting directory : containing a compendious view of the ancient and modern systems of the chase ; the method of breeding and managing the various kinds of hounds, particularly fox hounds : their diseases, with a certain cure for the distemper ; the pursuit of the fox, the hare, the stag, &c. The nature of scent considered and elucidated : also, notices of the wolf and boar hunting of France ; together with a variety of illustrative observations"

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Method of Breeding and Managing the various Kinds of Hounds, particularly 
Fox Hounds : their Diseases, with a certain Cure for the Distemper; 





Together witii 




Better to hunt in fields for health unbought. 

Than fee the doctor for a nauseous draught. Uryden. 






Sir harry M. MAINWARING, Bart. 


In dedicating the present little 

volume to you, allow me to observe, that I am 
actuated by no interested motive whatever ; but 
by an unqualified and sincere desire to express, 
in a distinguished manner, the high sense I en- 
tertain of your excellent character, as well as of 
yom* condescending and truly polite attention ; 
and in saying this, I am perfectly convinced, that 
I express, at the same time, the feelings of all 
those who have had the pleasure of attending your 
hoimds. As a genuine English Gentleman, there- 
fore, I dedicate this work to you ; which you 
will be pleased to accept as a token of sincere 
respect, fiom. 

Your obedient humble Servant, 


Liverpool, 1 

Sept. «1, 1826.5 


— <♦ » 1 — 

Of all the sciences which have fallen under human 
contemplation, less, perhaps, has been written on the 
subject of Hunting than any other ; not that it is so cir- 
cumscribed as to admit of little elucidation, but because 
sportsmen, occupied by the practical business of the 
chase, have not sufficient leisure, or probably seldom 
feel the inclination, to bestow that labour which is indis- 
pensable to such undertakings. The sportsmen of old, 
who have bequeathed us their notions on hunting, are 
to be read more as matter of curiosity than as sources 
from which may be derived any practical utility, since 
the progress of time has, in a great degree, oblitera- 
ted the old system of field sports. Amongst the sports- 
men of what may be called modern days, Somervile 
has given us his opinion in an elegant poem ; and 
Beckford, more recently, published his volume of sen- 
sible Letters ; these, with trifling exception, might be 
said to constitute all that has been written (at least in 
modern days) on the subject of hunting ; if we except 
the late publication of Colonel Cook, which I have not 


yet perused : in fact, all the chapters of the present 
volume were put together before I saw the announce- 
ment of the Colonel's work. 

However, as in a volume like the present, recurrence 
must necessarily be had to the opinions of preceding 
writers (Colonel Cook alone excepted), I have unhesi- 
tatingly quoted largely from Beckford and Somervile ; 
and indeed extracted whatever I thought worthy of 
notice from every other author, giving my own opinion 
where I happen to differ from them, and of course the 
reasons upon which such opinion is founded. Also, I 
have endeavoured to supply whatever appeared defec- 
tive, or had been altogether omitted, by those who have 
preceded me on the subject ; as well as noticed every 
recent improvement. I am, therefore, willing to hope, 
that the following pages will prove interesting and useful 
to the sportsman. 



Introductory Observations. — Ancient British Sports- 
men, the Saxons, the Danes, the Normans. — Ancient 
Method of Hunting. — Sjiortsmen of the Old and 
Modern Schools 1 — 25. 


Of Forming and Building the Kennel. — Its Courts, 
Lodging Rooms, Boiling Houses, 8fc. . 26 — 32. 


Extraordinary Sliced of Fox Hounds. — Of the Origin 
of Hounds. — The Talbot or Blood Hound, the Stag 
Hound, the Southern Hound, the Beagle, the Fox 
Hound. — The Olfactory Organs of the Hound. — 
Of the Size, Colour, and Breeding of Hounds, ^-c. 



Diseases (f Hounds and Methods of Cure. 54 — 112. 



Of the Naming of Hounds. — A List of Names. — Of the 
Feeder. — Of Boiling and Mixing the Meat, and the 
proper Food for Hounds.— The Method and Time 
of Feeding. — Of Bleeding and Physicking Hounds. 
— Of Entering Young Hounds. — Summer Hunting, 
Sfc. — Of Flogging Hounds. — Bedford' s System. 



Of the Huntsman and the Whippers-in, and their re- 
spective Duties 146 — 173. 


Of the Time of Meeting. — Of Blood. — The Opinion of 
the late Mr. Meynell upon the Subject of Blood, as 
well as on Hounds and Fox Hunting. — Of Draw- 
ing. — Riding to Hounds, and the Management of 
the Run. — Changing Foxes. — Hounds at Fault. — 
Of Halloos. — Bag Foxes. — Of Fox Courts. — 
Treatment of Cubs. — Digging Foxes. — Of Badgers. 



Of Hare Hunting. — The Opinion of a Sportsinan of 
the last Century ttpon this Subject. — The Hoiinds 
best calcidated for Hare Hunting. -^Of the Hunts- 
man and Whipper-in to a Pack of Harriers. — Hare 
Finders. — The Doubles of the Hare. — Warren 
Hares. — Pedestrian Sjjortsmen. — Of Music and 
Speed 207—230. 

viii. CONTENTS. 


Stag Hunting. — Otter Hunting. . . . 231 — 239. 


Of Scent. — Influence of the Atmosj)here upon Scent. — 
Is different in different Animals. . . 240 — 256. 


Wolf Hunting in France, with a Description of the 
Hounds and Equipage for that purpose. — A Wolf 
Chase 257—280. 


Hoar Hunting. — Manner of Training or Entering 
Yomig Hounds in France. . . . 281 — 294. 


The Methods of pursuing the Chase in Engla?id and 
in France compared. — Anecdotes of an extraordi- 
nary Pedestrian Fox Hunter. — Observations on the 
Mischievous Propensities of the Fox ; and upon the 
Injury sustained by his Depredations. 295 — 307. 


IntroductoryObscrvntions.-— Ancient British Sportsmen, 
the Saxons, the Danes, the Normans. — Ancient Method 
of Hunting. — Sportsmen of the Old and Modern 

In order to give a clear and somewhat comprehensive 
view of the present subject, it is my intention not to 
confine myself to the modern practice of Hunting, or 
the way in which it is now followed, but to give a retro- 
spective sketch of, or rapidly trace, its progress from 
the earliest periods to the present time ; and hence we 
shall perceive that the improvement which the chase, 
like all other sciences, has experienced, was the necessary 
consequence of circumstances ; that it resulted indeed 
from the different aspects which the country has, at 
various times, presented ; that hunting has, in fact, only 
kept pace with the progress of civilization, and the in- 
creased cultivation of the soil ; and that, therefore, the 
mode which at one period characterised it was by no 
means applicable to another. In saying that I shall trace 
its progress from the earliest periods, I do not mean to 
be understood as purposing to extend my observations 
to the most remote ages of the world, but merely to what 
may be called the earliest authenticated records of this 

Hunting is so deeply interesting to the human heart, 
that it is ardently followed by the savage as well as by the 


viii. CONTENTS. 


Stag Hunting. — Otter Hunting. . . . 231—239. 


Of Scent. — Influence of the AtmospJiere upon Scent. — 
/* different in different Animals. . . 240 — 256. 


Wolf Hunting in France, with a Description of the 
Hounds and Equipage for that purpose. — A Wolf 
Chase 257—280. 


Boar Hunting. — Manner of Training or Entering 
Young Hounds in France. . . . 281 — 294. 


The Methods of pursuing the Chase in England and 
in France compared. — Anecdotes of an extraordi- 
nary Pedestrian Fox Hunter. — Observatiotis on the 
Mischievous Propensities of the Fox ; and upon the 
Injur?/ sustained hy his Depredations. 295 — 307. 


Introductory Observations. — Ancient British Sportsmen^ 
the Saxons, the Danes, the Normans. — Ancient Method 
of Hunting. — Sportsmen of the Old and Modern 

In order to give a clear and somewhat comprehensive 
view of tlie present subject, it is my intention not to 
confine myself to the modern practice of Hunting, or 
the way in which it is now followed, but to give a retro- 
spective sketch of, or rapidly trace, its progress from 
the earliest periods to the present time ; and hence we 
shall perceive that the improvement which the chase, 
like all other sciences, has experienced, was the necessary 
consequence of circumstances ; that it resulted indeed 
from the different aspects which the country has, at 
various times, presented ; that hunting has, in fact, only 
kept pace with the progress of civilization, and the in- 
creased cultivation of the soil ; and that, therefore, the 
mode which at one period characterised it was by no 
means applicable to another. In saying that I shall trace 
its progress from the earliest periods, I do not mean to 
be understood as purposing to extend my observations 
to the most remote ages of the world, but merely to what 
may be called the earliest authenticated records of this 

Hunting is so deeply interesting to the human heart, 
that it is ardently followed by the savage as well as by the 


Ancient British Sportsmen. 

civilized man ; and no doubt can be entertained, that the 
inhabitants of this island, prior to the invasion of Julius 
Caesar, followed the chase, as well for amusement, as for 
the means of subsistence ; but, as we are ignorant of the 
means which they adopted to accomplish their purpose, 
we must be content with the slender knowledge we pos- 
sess on the subject, and proceed for further information 
to periods when the chase was followed under what may 
be called a regular and well-authenticated form. 

When the Saxons visited this country, hunting as- 
sumed an organized character ; and no sooner had the 
Danes attained the mastery, than they instituted laws 
for the protection of game, the increased severity of 
which marked the imperious sway of the Normans, and 
fixed an indelible stigma on the memory of William I. 
The Saxons were undoubtedly much attached to hunting 
— the same remark will equally apply to the Danes ; 
while the Normans manifested such an invincible passion 
for field sports, that the business of the chase was re- 
garded as one of the most important duties of life by the 
monarch and all the great men of the kingdom. Hence 
it is not surprising, that the science of hunting should 
have made considerable progress under such ardent 
sportsmen ; the services of that noblest of quadrupeds, 
the horse,* were called in to enhance the pleasures of the 
chase ; and the breeding of hounds seems, at this period, 
to have been well understood, and pursued upon syste- 
matic principles. It is true, the hounds used by the 

• It is doubtful if the horse was used in the chase prior to the Norman 


Hunting of our Ancestors. 

Normans might be somewhat different from our modern 
stocks ; but they -were, no doubt, well adapted to the 
state of the country, and the mode of hunting then 
pursued ; and were, hi all probability, of the old Talbot 
kind, whence have sprung, I am inclined to think, all 
the various ramifications of the hound tribe which may 
be seen in various parts of the kingdom at the present 

Somervile's ideas upon the subject of the hunting of 
our remote ancestors perfectly agrees with the opinion 
above expressed, as will be seen by the following quota- 
tion from his expressive and elegant poem: — 

— — " Devotion pure, 

And strong necessity, thus 6rst began 
The chase of beasts : though bloody was the deed. 
Yet without guilt. For the green herb alone, 
Unequal to sustain man's labouring race, 
Now every moving thing that liv'd on earth 
Was granted him for food. So just is Heaven, 
To give us in proportion to our wants. 
Or chance or industry in after time 
Some few improvements made, but short as yet 
Of due perfection. In this isle remote, 
Our painted ancestors were slow to learn. 
To arms devote, of the politer arts 
Nor skill'd nor studious; till from Neustria's coasts 
Victorious William, to more decent rules 
Subdu'd our Saxon fatlicrs, taught to speak 
The proper dialect, %vith horn and voice 
To cheer the busy hound, whose well-known cry 
His listening peers approve with joint acclaim. 
From him buccessive huntsmen leara d to join 
In bloody social leagues, the multitude 
Dispers'd, to size, to sort their various tribes, 



Origin of Hunting Terms. 

To rear, feed, hunt, and discipline the pack. 
Hail, happy Britain ! highly favor'd isle. 
And Heav'n's peculiar care ! to thee 'tis given 
To train the sprightly steed, more fleet than those 
Begot by winds, or the celestial breed 
That bore the great Pelides through the press 
Of heroes arm'd, and broke their crowded ranks, 
Which, proudly neighing, with the sun begins 
Cheerful his course, and, ere his beams decline. 
Has measur'd half thy surface unfatigu'd. 
In thee alone, fair land of liberty ! 
Is bred the perfect hound, in scent and speed 
As yet unrivall'd; while, in other climes, 
Their virtue fails, a weak degenerate race. 
Tn vain malignant steams and winter fogs 
Load the dull air, and hover round our coasts. 
The huntsman, ever gay, robust, and bold. 
Defies the noxious vapour, and confides 
In this delightful exercise to raise 
His drooping head, and cheer his heart with joy." 

1 am inclined to think that many of our hunting terms 
at present in use may be traced to a Norman origin : 
halloo, for instance, immediately derived from a loup, 
seems to have descended from the source just mentioned. 

The Normans went to the field, or rather perhaps to 
the forest, on horseback, armed with bows and arrows, 
and other weapons, and attended by a great retinue. 
The game was roused by the dogs, and shot at by the 
sportsmen, as often as opportunity offered ; a consider- 
able space was, on some occasions, encircled by toils or 
nets, and a sort of indiscriminate slaughter ensued of 
the Various .animals thus inclosed. 

The stag, the wolf, and the wild boar, constituted the 
principal objects of pursuit ; and though there was no 


Ancient Norman Hunters. 

scarcity of foxes, yet these animals, which at present 
afford a species of diversion which leaves all other field 
sports at an immeasurable distance, were httle attended 
to by the sportsmen of the remote period now iinder 
contemplation : the reason is evident — the chase of the 
fox was not understood, nor yet adapted to the state of 
the country ; and though we now regard the pursuit of 
this animal as far preferable to any other chase, it is 
owing almost intirely to the different aspect which the 
face of the country presents, that it stands so deservedly 
high in the estimation of modern sportsmen. When the 
early Normans followed the chase in this country, the 
game, it is true, was roused and pursued by the hounds, 
as I have already observed ; but it generally received its 
quietus from the hand of the sportsman, either by means 
of the arrow, the spear, or other weapon with which he 
was prepared for the purpose. Under such a system of 
the chase, a fox would appear scarcely entitled to atten- 
tion ; nor would he indeed form a mark sufficiently con- 
spicuous for the arrow or the spear ; and therefore, upon 
a transient view of the subject, it will seem no way sur- 
prising, that he was little, if at all, sought after by the 
old Norman sportsmen. 

A few illustrative observations, from an ancient writer, 
will show the irresistible propensity of the Normans for 
the chase, as well as the style and character in which they 
pursued it. — " In these days (says he) our nobihty esteem 
the sports of hunting and hawking as the most honourable 
employments, the most exalted virtues ; and to be conti- 
nually engaged in these amusements is, in their opinion, 
the summit of human ha})piness. They prepare for a 

A 3 


Ancient Norman Hunters. 

hunt with more trouble, anxiety, and cost, than they 
would for a battle, and follow the beasts of the forest with 
more fury than they do their enemies : by being con- 
stantly engaged in this savage sport, they contract habits 
of barbarity, lose, in a great measure, their feelings of 
humanity, and become nearly as ferocious as the beasts 
they pursue. The husbandman is driven, together with 
his innocent flocks and herds, from his fertile fields, his 
meadows, and his pastures, that beasts may roam there 
in his stead. Should one of these potent and merciless 
sportsmen pass your door, place before him, in a moment, 
all the refreshment your habitation affords, or that can 
be purchased or borrowed in your neighbourhood, that 
you may not be utterly ruined, or perchance accused of 
treason. The sam.e writer tells us, that the fair sex 
caught the predominant passion ; while we learn, from 
other sources, that the mitre deserted its functions, and 
the coiol quitted the quiet retirement of the monastery, 
to join in the transporting pleasures of the chase." 

Walterus, archdeacon of Canterbury, who was pro- 
moted to the see of Rochester in 1147, totally neglected 
the duties of his sacred profession, and devoted his time 
entirely to hunting. At the age of 80, he is said to have 
been a keen sportsman, and he died at a very advanced 
period. Reginaldus Brian, bishop of Worcester in 1332, 
was distinguished for his attention to field sports ; and 
in an epistle of his (now extant) to the bishop of St. 
David's, he reminds him of a promise he had made to 
send him six couple of excellent hunting dogs. He de- 
clares his heart languishes for their arrival, and observes 
> — " Let them come, then, oh ! reverend father ! without 


Ancient Hunters. 

delay ; let my woods re-echo with the music of their cry, 
and the cheerful notes of the horn ; and let the walls of 
my palace be decorated with the trophies of the chase !" 
Some of these clerical sportsmen, however, contrived to 
blend amusement and business, as it were ; and in their 
visitations through their dioceses, they were attended 
with such numbers of horses, hounds, huntsmen, and 
falconers, that the religious houses were frequently very 
much distressed to provide for so numerous a retinue. 
About the year 1200, the prior and canons of Bridlington 
in Yorkshire, presented a formal complaint to the pope 
(Innocent III) against the archdeacon of Richmond, who, 
when he made his visitations, brought such a prodigious 
number of attendants, that the complainants declared, 
that his suite consumed more provision in one hour than 
would serve the whole community a long time. The 
pope, in consequence, despatched a bull, forbidding such 
scandalous and oppressive visits in future. 

The monasteries also produced their mighty hun- 
ters ; and William de Clowne, who is celebrated as the 
most amiable ecclesiastic of his time, and who filled the 
abbacy of St. Mary, in Leicestershire, is no less distin- 
guished for his p: ofound skill in the science of the chase, 
which is numbered amongst his excellent qualities ; and 
that his kennel might always be well supplied with 
hounds, the king granted him the privilege of holding a 
fair or market, for the sole purpose of dealing in dogs. 

It would appear from ancient records, that the Anglo- 
Saxons pursued the wild boar and wolf on foot ; while 
the Normans improved upon this method by introducing 
the horse, and directed their attention, for the most part, 


Progress of Hunting. 

to the pursuit of the stag, the roe-buck, the fox, the 
hare, &c. nor do they appear to have depended entirely 
on their dogs, as they were excellent marksmen and made 
a very liberal use of the bow — thus William Rufus lost 
his life. 

Edward I. may be justly enumerated among the ori- 
ginal fox-hunters ; and his wardrobe book, for the 28th 
year of his reign, contains an item of the number and 
expense of his kennel, which it seems consisted of twelve 
hounds, and their annual expense amounted to twenty- 
one pounds, six shillings. 

Hunting, indeed, about this period, appears to have 
been reduced to a regular science ; and several treatises 
were written on the subject, containing instructions for 
juvenile sportsmen, as well as rules for the various offices 
in the forest, the stable, and the kennel. A curious 
performance on this subject, in Norman-French, is still 
extant. It was written in the beginning of the fourteenth 
century, by William Twice, grand huntsman to Edward 
II. and an ancient translation of it may be found among 
the Cottonian manuscripts. After all, it is very clear 
that the oppressive severity of the forest laws was not 
sufficient to restrain the yeomanry from a diversion to 
which they were so passionately attached. Many of them, 
taking advantage of that relaxed state which the feudal 
system naturally produced, retired into the recesses of 
the large forests, which, at this period, covered a con- 
siderable part of the kingdom, and, forming themselves 
into a sort of banditti, pursued their favourite sport 
almost without restraint. Hence the tradition of Robin 
Hood and Little John ; whose deeds are related in num- 


Old Method of Fox-hunting. 

berless old songs, which still continue great favourites 
with the vulgar. 

But such a state of things was found incompatible 
with the progress of civilization, and consequently gave 
way to a different system : as the cultivation of the soil 
proceeded, the wolf and the wild boar continued to retire 
from the face of man, till at length they could no longer 
shelter themselves, and were thus ultimately extermi- 
nated. The stag, however, long maintained his ground 
against the cultivators of the soil ; or rather, he might 
be said to be taken under especial protection, and con- 
tinued to animate and adorn the various forests, which 
are not, even at the present day, entirely disafforested, 
though little remains to remind us of their former appear- 

The stag constituted the principal object of chase after 
the extirpation of the wild boar and the wolf, and stag- 
hunting has continued the favourite pastime of royalty 
to the present period. As the country was progressively 
cleared of its useless woods and morasses, missiles were 
laid aside in the pursuit of this animal, it being dis- 
covered that his powers of speed and contrivance enabled 
him to afford far superior diversion, when the exertions 
of the hounds were unassisted by the use of those wea- 
pons which had hitherto been employed on the occasion. 
But, though the stag was regarded as the noblest chase, 
the pursuit of the fox occupied the attention of the 
sportsman, and the manner of it is thus described by a 
writer of the seventeenth century: — "The fox is taken 
with hounds, greyhounds, terriers, nets, and gins. 


Old Method of Fox-hunting. 

" Of terriers there are two sorts — the one is crooked- 
legged and commonly short-haired, and these will take 
earth well, and will he very long at fox or badger; the 
other sort is shagged and straight-legged, and these will 
not only hunt above ground as others, but also enter the 
earth with much more fury than the former, but cannot 
stay in so long by reason of their great eagerness. 

"The entering and fleshing them may be done several 
ways; in the first place, thus: when foxes and badgers 
have young cubs, then take your old terriers and enter 
them in the ground, and when they begin to bay, you 
must then hold every one of your terriers at a sundry 
hole or mouth of the earth, that they may listen and 
hear the old ones bay. Having taken the old fox or 
badger, and that nothing remains within but the young 
cubs, then couple up all your old terriers and put in the 
young in their stead, encouraging them by crying to him, 
to hinii to him ! and if they take any young cub within 
the ground, let them alone to do what they please with 
him, and forget not to give the old ones their reward, 
which is the blood and hvers, fried with cheese and some 
of their own grease, shewing them the heads and skins 
to encourage them : — before you reward them, wash 
them with soap and warm water, to clear their skins 
from earth and cjlay that is clodded to the hair, other- 
wise they are apt to be mangie. 

*' Now, to say the truth, there is not much pastime or 
pleasure in hunting a fox under ground ; for as soon as 
that subtle creature perceiveth the terriers, if they bay 
hard, and lie near unto them, they will bolt out imme- 
diately, unless it be when the bitch hath youn§ cubs, 


Old Method of Fox-hunting. 

then they will sooner die than stir. — They make their 
earths as near as they can in stony ground, or amongst 
the roots of trees ; and their earths have commonly but 
one hole, and that is straight a long way in before it 
comes at their couch : sometimes craftily they possess 
themselves of a badger's old burrow, which hath variety 
of chambers, holes, and angles. When a good terrier 
doth once bind the fox, he then yearns and defends him- 
self very notably, but not so strenuously as the badger, 
nor is his biting half so dangerous. 

** Of fox-hunting above ground. — To this purpose 
you must draw with your hounds about groves, thickets, 
and bushes near villages ; a fox will lurk in such places 
to prey on young pigs and poultry ; but it will be neces- 
sary to stop up his earths, if you can find them, the night 
before you intend to hunt, and the best time will be 
about midnight, for then the fox goeth out to seek his 
prey : you may stop his holes by laying two white sticks 
across before them, which will make him imagine it is 
some gin or trap laid for him ; or else you may stop them 
up close with black thorns and earth together. 

" The best hunting a fox above ground, is in January, 
February, and March, for then you shall best see your 
hounds hunting, and best find his earthing ; besides, at 
those times the fox's skin is best in season. Again, the 
hounds best hunt the fox in the coldest weather, because 
he leaveth a very strong scent behind him ; yet, in cold 
weather, it chills fastest. At first, only cast off your 
sure finders, and as the drag mends, so add more as you 
dare trust them. Shun easting off too many hounds at 
once, because woods and coverts are full of sundry 


Draper, the Fox-hunterj - 

chases, and so you may engage them in too many at one 
time. Let such as you cast off first, be old staunch 
hounds, which are sure ; and if you hear such a hound 
call on merrily, you may cast off some other to him; and 
when they run it on the full cry, cast off the rest, and 
thus you shall complete your pastime. The words of 
comfort are the same which are used in the other chases, 
attended with the same hoUowings and other ceremonies. 
Let the hounds kill the fox themselves, and worry and 
tear him as much as they please : many hounds will eat 
him with eagerness. When he is dead, hang him at the 
end of a pike-stafF, and hollow in your hounds to bay 
him : but reward them not with any thing belonging to 
the fox, for it is not good." 

The greyhovmds employed in the pursuit of the fox 
were strong, wire-haired animals, placed in situations 
where it was expected the fox would make his appear- 
ance, and they were slipped at him as he passed. Thus, 
when the fox had been driven from his kennel by the 
hounds, he had to encounter a succession of greyhounds 
which were placed in relays for the purpose. 

It is difficult to trace the progress of hunting, and of 
fox-hunting in particular; but yet, I am inclined to think, 
what may be called its next stage may be tolerably well 
conceived from the following : — " In the old, but now 
ruinous, mansion of Berwick Hall, in the East Riding 
of Yorkshire, once lived the well-known William Draper, 
Esq. who bred, fed, and hunted the staunchest pack of 
fox-hounds in Europe. Upon an income of only 700/. 
per annum he brought up^ creditably, eleven sons and 
daughters; kept a stable of excellent hunters, a kennel 


And bis Daughter. 

of true-bred fox-hounds, besides a carriage with horses 
suitable, for the convenience of my lady and her daughters. 
He lived in the old honest style of his county, kiUing 
every month a good ox of his own feeding, and priding 
himself on maintaining a substantial table, but with no 
foreign kickshaws. His general apparel was a long dark 
drab hunting coat, a belt round his waist, and a strong 
velvet cap on his head. In his humour he was very 
facetious, always having some pleasant story, both in the 
field and in the hall, so that his company was much 
sought after by persons of good condition, and which 
was of great use to him in the subsequent advancement 
of his children. His stables and kennels were kept in 
such order, that sportsmen observed them as schools for 
huntsmen and grooms, who were glad to come there 
without wages, merely to learn their business. When 
they had obtained proper instruction, he then recom- 
mended them to other gentlemen, who wished for no 
better character than Squu-e Draper's recommendation. 
He was always up, during the hunting season, at four 
in the morning, mounted on one of his nags at five o'clock, 
hunself bringing forth his hounds, who knew every note 
of their old master's voice. In the field he rode with 
judgment, avoiding what was unnecessary, and helping 
his hounds when they were at fault. His daughter Di, 
who was equally famous at riding, used to assist him, 
cheering the hounds with her voice. She died at York 
in a good old age, and, what was wonderful to many 
sportsmen who dared not follow her, she died with whole 
bones, in her bed. 


Hugh Meynell, Ksq. 

"After the fatigues of the day, which were generally 
crowned with the brushes of a brace of foxes, he enter- 
tained those who would return with him, and which was 
sometimes thirty miles distance, with old English hospi- 
tality. Good old October was the liquor drank ; and 
his first fox-hunting toast, was ' All the brushes in 
Christendom.' At the age of eighty years this gentleman 
died, as he chiefly lived, for he died on horseback. As 
he was going to give some instructions to a friend who 
was rearing up a pack of fox-hounds, he was seized with 
a fit, and dropping from his old favourite pony, he ex- 
pired ! There was no man, rich or poor, in his neigh- 
bourhood, but lamented his death ; and the foxes were 
the only things that had occasion to be glad that Squire 
Draper was no more." 

The foundation of the present system of fox-hunting 
was unquestionably laid by the celebrated Hugo Mey- 
nell, Esq. who for many years conducted the Quorndon 
establishment, and whose ideas upon the subject I shall 
notice repeatedly in the course of this work. 

When fox-hunting had assumed something of its 
modern form, the chase was followed by a slow, heavy 
hound, whose exquisite olfactory organs enabled him to 
carry on the scent a considerable time after the fox had 
passed, as v/ell over greasy fallows, as hard roads, and 
other places where the modern high-bred fox-hound 
would not be able to recognise it. Thus the chase conti- 
nued for double the duration which it at present occupies, 
and hence may be seen the reason why the old Enghsh 
hunter, so celebrated in former days, and so great a 
favourite witli sportsmen of the old school, was enabled 


Ancient and Modern Hour of Meeting. 

to perform those feats which are exultingly bruited in 
his praise. The fact is, that the hounds and the horses 
were very well calculated for each other : — if the latter 
possessed not the speed of the Meltonian hunter, the 
hounds were equally slow ; and though the pursuit was 
not carried on with that impetuous velocity, which forms 
the leading feature of its present highly-improved state, 
still the superior olfactory nerves of the old hound 
enabled him to bring the business to a more certain, 
though a more protracted, conclusion. 

Sportsmen of the old school, it would appear, com- 
menced their operations at a much earlier period than the 
moderns : — it is recorded of 'Squire Draper, for instance, 
who has been already noticed, that "he was always up at 
four in the morning, and mounted on one of his nags at 
five ;" and the question which naturally suggests itself to 
the mind, on reading such a statement, is, — how far had 
he to ride to cover ? for, unless the distance was much 
greater than usual, he would, during the best part of 
the hunting season, arrive at the appointed spot several 
hours before day-light ; and I cannot induce myself to 
believe, that fox-hunting can be very pleasant diversion 
in the dark ! However, I have no hesitation in supposing, 
that the sportsmen of the old school met at an earlier hour 
than the modern fox-hunter thinks necessary ; that they 
met, in fact, as soon as day-light would enable them to 
observe the motions of the hounds, and this circumstance 
gave them decided advantages : — in the first place, there 
would be less difficulty in finding, and in the next, the 
fox would be less calculated for maintaining the contest, 
in consequence of having to run upon an overgorged 


stomach : yet, notwithstanding all this, the runs were 
frequently of very long duration ; and if commenced at 
a later period of the day, according to modern custom, 
would, perhaps, rarely have ended vnth the death of the 
fox. It may be truly remarked indeed, that while the 
old fox-hunters ran down their game, the sportsmen of 
modern days run up to it ; and this, in a few words, 
constitutes the essential difference between what may 
be called the old and the modern school of fox-hvmting. 
For the former, as I have already observed, a heavy 
tender-nosed hound was used, which would follow on 
the line of the fox under very adverse circumstances of 
atmosphere and country ; and was thus enabled at last 
to run down the chase : while the modern fox-hound pos- 
sesses sufficient speed to run well up to the fox ; and, 
by blowing or distressing him at the commencement of 
the struggle, he is generally not able to get far ahead ; 
the business is thus finished in a much shorter period, 
with little or no interruption, accompanied by all that 
dash, that maddening impetuosity, which constitutes the 
supreme delight of fox-hunting. At the same time, it 
must be admitted, that the modern high-bred fox-hound 
cannot, generally speaking, hunt a cold scent ; if the 
atmosphere be unfavourable, he cannot hunt ; if he 
cannot run well up to the game, he soon loses it alto- 
gether — his nose is not sufficiently tender to enable him 
to recognize the scent, when the chase is far before him. 
There are fox-hounds still to be met with which are able 
to hunt what may called a cold scent ; in Yorkshire, 
fox-hounds of this description are to be found. In the 
year 1825, I noticed many in Lord Harewood's pack 


Fox Hounds. 

which partook much of the old school ; the same remark 
is equally applicable to the fox-hounds of Sir Tatton 
Sykes, to the York and Ainsty, as well as to the Bads- 
worth, though not in so great a degree, and may perhaps 
extend to others which have not fallen under my obser- 
vation. The country hunted by the hounds just enu- 
merated, would appear to render tender-nosed hounds 
indispensable, since extensive fallows are of frequent 
occurrence, and also other circumstances equally unfa- 
fourable to scent. The case is different in Leicester- 
shire, which is chiefly a grazing county, and where, of 
course, a high-bred hound is afforded an opportunity of 
exhibiting his powers under every possible advantage. 
In the month of November of the year 1824, I saw a 
fox found, by the Duke of Rutland's hounds, in a cover 
called Holywell Mouth, near Melton ; the hovmds went 
away close at his brush, and killed him very handsomely 
in two and twenty minutes ! such a circumstance could 
rarely, if ever, occur, with hounds of the old school. 
The Cheshire hounds (those of Sir Harry Mainwaring) 
are as fleet as the hounds used in Leicestershire, though 
the country is not so favourable for hunting ; but the 
inclosures are, for the most part, small ; and thus a judi- 
cious huntsman, when he comes to a fallow or other 
ground, where his hounds cannot recognize the scent, will 
immediately lift them to the next fence, where it seldom 
fails to be hit off again. 


Of Forming and Building the Kennel. — Its CourtSj 
Lodging Rooms, Boiling Houses, ^c. 

In the establishment of a pack of hounds, the first 
consideration that obviously presents itself is the Kennel, 
upon which the poet of the chase thus beautifully ex- 
presses himself: — 

" First let the kennel be the huntsman's care. 
Upon some little eminence erect, 
And fronting to the ruddy dawn ; its courts 
On either hand wide opening to receive 
The sun's all-cheering beams, when mild he shines. 
And gilds the mountain tops. For much the pack 
(Rous'd from their dark alcoves) delight to stretch 
And bask in his invigorating ray : 
Warn'd by the streaming light, and merry lark, 
Forth rush the jolly clan : with tuneful throats 
They carol loud, and, in grand chorus join'd. 
Salute the new-born day. 
O'er all let cleanliness preside, no scraps 
Bestrew the pavement, and no half-pick'd bones 
To kindle fierce debate, or to disgust 
That nicer sense, on which the sportsman's hope, 
And all his future triumphs, must depend. 
Soon as the growling pack, with eager joy. 
Have lapp'd their smoking viands, morn or eve. 
From the full cistern lead the ductile streams, 
To wash thy court well pav'd, nor spare thy pains, 
For much to health will cleanliness avail. 
Seck'st thou for bounds to climb the rocky steep, 


Two Kennels lecommended. 

And brush th' entangled covert, whose nice scent 
O'er greasy fallows, and frequented roads. 
Can pick the dubious way. Banish far oflF 
Each noisome stench, let no oflFensive smell 
Invade thy wide enclosure, but admit 
The nitrous air, and purifying breeze." 

Beckford is very particular in his instructions respecting 
the kennel ; and as he very judiciously observes, its size 
must be suited to the number of its inhabitants ; but, he 
continues, " I make no doubt, there are many better 
kennels than mine ; some of which, I think, you should 
see before you begin to build." No better advice can 
be given ; and it is highly advisable for any person who 
contemplates building a kennel, in the first place, to visit 
several of the principal fox-hunting establishments, from 
which he will not fail to derive much useful information^, 
as well as obtain the best possible guide for his own con- 
templated structure. It is not easy to convey the requi- 
site directions on paper for this purpose ; and, after all, 
a little personal inspection of a few of the kennels which 
are already reared, would convey much better and more 
lucid ideas to the mind, than a bulky volume written on 
the subject. The author of the " Thoughts on Hunting," 
speaking of his own kennel, observes : — " I think two 
kennels absolutely necessary to the Avell-being of the 
hounds : when there is but one, it is seldom sweet ; and 
when cleaned out, the hounds, particularly in winter, 
suffer both whilst it is cleaning, and as long as it remains 
wet afterwards. 

*'The floor of each lodging-room should be bricked, 
and sloped on both sides to run to the center, with a 



Interior of the Kennel. 

gutter left to carry off the water, that when they are 
washed, they may be soon dry. If water should stand 
through any fault in the floor, it should be carefully 
mopped up ; for as warmth is in the greatest degree 
necessary to hounds after work, so damps are equally 

" I also wish that, contrary to the usual practice in 
building kennels, you would have three doors ; two in 
front, and one in the back, the last to have a lattice 
window in it, with a wooden shutter, which is constantly 
to be kept closed when the hounds are in, except in 
summer, when it should be left open all the day. This 
door answers two very necessary purposes : It gives an 
opportunity of carrying out the straw when the lodging- 
room is cleaned, and as it is opposite to the window, will 
be a means to let in a thorough air, which will greatly 
contribute to the keeping of it sweet and wholesome. 
The other doors will be of use in drying the room, when 
the hounds are out, and as one is to be kept shut, and 
the other hooked back, (allowing just room for a dog to 
pass) they are not liable to any objection. The great 
window in the centre should have a folding shutter; 
half, or the whole of which, may be shut at nights, accord- 
ing to the weather ; and your kennels by that means, 
may be kept warm, or cool, just as you please to have 
them. The two great lodging-rooms are exactly alike, 
and as each has a court belonging to it, are distinct ken- 
nels, and are at the opposite ends of the building ; in the 
centre of which, is the boiling-house, and feeding-yard ; 
and on each side a lesser kennel, either for hounds that 
are drafted off; hounds that are sick or lame ; or for any 


Interior of the Kennel. 

other purposes, as occasion may require. At the back 
of which, as they are but half the depth of the two great 
kennels, are places for coals, &c. for the use of the kennel. 
There is also a small building in the rear for hot bitches. 
The floors of the inner courts, like to those of the lodging- 
rooms, are bricked and sloped to run to the centre, and 
a channel of water, brought in by a leaden pipe, runs 
through the middle of them. In the centre of each court 
is a well, large enough to dip a bucket to clean the ken- 
nels ; this must be faced with stone, or it will be often 
out of repair. In the feeding-yard, you must have a 
wooden cover. 

'*The benches, which must be open to let the urine 
through, shovdd have hinges and hooks in the wall, that 
they may fold up, for the greater convenience of washing 
out the kennel ; and they should be made as low as pos- 
sible, that a tired hovmd may have no difficulty in jmnping 
up ; let me add, that the boiler should be of cast-iron. 

*' The rest of the kennel consists of a large court in 
front, which is also bricked, having a grass-court adjoin- 
ing, and a little brook running through the middle of it. 
The earth which was taken out of it, is thrown up into 
a mount, where the hounds in summer delight to sit. 
This court is planted round with trees, and has besides 
a lime tree, and some horse chesnut trees near the middle 
of it, for the sake of shade. A high pale incloses the 
whole ; part of which, to the height of about four feet, 
is close ; the other open : tlie intex'stices are about two 
inches wide. The grass-court is pitched (paved) near 
the pale, to prevent the hounds from scratching out. 



Appendages to the Kennel. 

"At the back of the kennel is a house, thatched and 
furzed up on the sides, big enough to contain at least a 
load ^f straw. Here should be a pit ready to receive 
the dung, and a gallows for the flesh. The gal-lows 
should have a thatched roof, and a circular board at the 
posts of it, to prevent vermin from climbing up. 

"A stove,* I believe, is made use of in some kennels; 
but where the feeder is a good one, a mop, properly 
used, will render it unnecessary. I have a little hay- 
rick in the grass-yard, which I think is of use to keep 
the hounds clean and fine in their coats ; you will find 
them frequently rubbing themselves against it : the shade 
of it also is useful to them in summer. If ticks at any 
time should be troublesome in your kennel, let the walls 
of it be well washed ; if that does not destroy them, the 
walls should then be whitewashed. 

* I cannot agree with Beckford that stoves are unnecessary ; on the 
contrary, as nothing is more conducive to the health of hounds than 
' w-armth, so the introduction and use of stoves in newly-built or damp 
tennels must be of the most essential utility. In the year 1825, Sir Bel- 
lingham Graham's hounds took possession of 3 new kennel built near 
Shrewsbury ; many of them soon afterwards became lame in the shoulder, 
and continued to get worse in defiance of the application of various means 
for their restoration : the disease spread — it might justly be called an epi- 
demic; the progress of which was ultimately arrested by the introduction 
of stoves. — This lameness in the shoulder is by no means a new disease ; 
it has frequently shewn itself, and indeed occasionally made considerable 
havock ; yet. upon investigation, 1 am inclined to think, that it has seldom, 
if ever, been known in dry, warm kennels. Like the rheumatism in the 
human subject, it is brought on by humidity or cold, or both ; and, like 
that disease, is only to be removed by the administration of heat But, as 
a preventative is preferable to a cure, so, therefore, are stoves to be recom- 
mended as a certain method of obviating lameness in the shoulder, which, 
to say the least of it, renders a hound completely useless. 


The Quorndon Kennel. 

" In the summer when you do not hunt, one kennel 
will be sufficient ; the other then may be for the youug 
hounds, who should also have the grass-court adjoining 
to it. It is best at that time of the year to keep them 
separate, and it prevents many accidents which otherwise 
might happen ; nor should they be put together till the 
hunting season begins. If your hounds are very quarrel- 
some, the feeder may sleep in a cot, in the kennel adjoin- 
ing ; and if they are well chastised at the first quarrel, 
his voice will be sufficient to settle all their differences 
afterwards. Close to the door of the kennel, let there 
be always a quantity of little switches ; which three narrow 
boards, nailed to one of the posts, will easily contain. 

" My kennel is close to the road-side, but it was un- 
avoidable. This is the reason why my front pale is close, 
and only the side ones open ; it is a great fault : avoid it 
if you can, and your hounds will be the quieter." 

Beckford's remarks are evidently characterized by 
good sense, and no doubt can be entertained that his 
knowledge on the subject was not only extensive, but 
even accurate, to speak by comparison ; yet, as the human 
genius is continually at work, so the kennel may be said 
to have shared the benefits arising from its labours. 
Improvements have unquestionably been made upon the 
plan of Mr. Beckford. The kennel of the first fox- 
hunting establishment in the world (the Quorndon, at 
present under the direction of Mr. Osbaldeston) is suffi- 
ciently extensive to accommodate about one hundred 
couple of hounds. It consists of two very spacious grass 
courts, without either mount or brook, with several lodg- 
ing-rooms, (four, if my memory be correct) some of which 


Duke of Rutland's Kennel. 

are circular, and have not only a very pretty appearance, 
but are preferable even on the score of utility : the stage 
upon which the hounds repose in these circular lodging- 
rooms is also circular, placed in the centre of the apart- 
ment, sufficient space being left to walk round it, and thus 
the hounds may be said to be placed out of the reach of 
damp walls — the superiority of this plan is obvious at the 
first glance. The boiling-house and feeding-room are 
conveniently contrived, and placed of course near the 
lodging-rooms. Mr. Osbaldeston's house is situated close 
to the kennel, a door from which may be said indeed to 
open into one of the grass courts. The stable, capable 
of containing about thirty hunters, is situated on the same 
side of the kennel, and also joins the mansion. The 
huntsman's house is at the opposite corner, the door of 
which opens into the kennel close to the lodging-rooms. 
The feeder sleeps close to the lodging-rooms also. — 
The boiling-house, lodging-rooms, &c. may be said to 
form the top of the kennel, an entrance from which leads 
into a circular covered ride, where the horses are exer- 
cised in wet weather. At a short distance is situated 
another kennel for the young hounds, the court of which 
is of considerable extent. 

The kennels of his Grace the Duke of Rutland are 
worthy of attention, as well as several others in various 
parts of the kingdom. More on the subject of the kennel 
seems unnecessary. 


Extraordinary Speed of Fox Hounds. — Of the Origin 
of Hounds — The Talbot or Blood Hound, the Stag 
Hound, the Southern Hound, the Beagle, the Fox 
Hound. — The Olfactory Organs of the Hound. — Of 
the Si%e, Colour, and Breeding of Hounds, Sfc. 

The kennel being prepared, its tenants of course form 
the next subject for consideration. The breeding of 
hounds demands the utmost attention of the sportsman ; 
and I am incHned to think, that, up to the present period, 
it has not been thoroughly understood : I am of opinion 
that we have not reached the acme of perfection in this 
respect, although I am aware that extraordinary hounds 
have occasionally made their appearance, whose perform- 
ances are to be found recorded in several pubhcations, 
and who have therefore obtained a triumphant immor- 
tahty through the medium of the press. For instance, 
two hounds belonging to the late Mr. Barry, (then 
master of the Cheshire hounds) Bluecap and Wanton, 
became celebrious for micommon speed : they are said to 
have run a drag "from the Rubbing House at New- 
market-town-end, to the Rubbing House at the starting- 
post of the Beacon course, in a few seconds more than 
eight minutes," beating two capital hounds belonging to 
the late Mr. Meyncll. Merkin, a fox-hound bitch, bred 
by the late Colonel Thornton, ran a trial of four miles, 


The Talbot, 

which she performed in seven minutes and half a second. 
Madcap was another famous hound belonging to the 
same gentleman; as also Lounger, who was supposed 
to be the best fox-hound of his time. " Madcap, at 
two years old, challenged all England for 500 guineas. 
Lounger, brother to Madcap, did the same at four years 
old ; the challenge was accepted, and a bet made for 200 
guineas, to run Mr. Meynell's Pillager ; the parties were 
also allowed to start any other hound of Mr. Meynell's, 
and Lounger was to beat both ; but, upon Lounger being 
seen at Tattersall's by many of the first sportsmen, his 
bone and form were so capital that it was thought proper 
to pay forfeit, which was done by giving Colonel Thorn- 
ton a pair of gold couples." These, however, are instances 
merely of extraordinary speed, which is certainly highly 
necessary in a fox-hound ; yet, there are other qualities, 
and superior olfactory organs in particular, which ought 
to be considered as equally indispensable. 

All the ramifications of the hound which we at present 
possess sprung from one and the same source, namely, 
the Talbot, or old English blood-hound.* These dogs 
are noticed by our immortal bard, who represents them 
as " crook-kneed and dewlapt, like Thessalian bulls." 
Shakespeare, it is well known, was prosecuted for deer- 

* A very different animal from the blood'bound employed by the Spani- 
ards in the West Indies, to hunt the runaway negroes. The Spanish 
blood-hound is a large ferocious animal, with small pointed cars, and very 
inferior olfactory organs ; so much so indeed, that in all intricate cases 
they are accompanied by a smaller dog, called a ^nrfer. For a further 
illustration of this subject, we refer the reader to Dallas's Historij of the 
Maroon War. 


Or okl English Blood-hound. 

stealing, by Sir Thomas Lucy ; and as the Talbot, or 
something nearly allied to the Talbot, was used at this 
period by deer-stealers, he must have been well ac- 
quainted with them. Crook-kneed is not a flattering 
recommendation in a hound, nor is such a circumstance 
noticed by Somervile, who thus describes the Talbot : — 

" But if th'amphibious otter be thy chase, 

Or stately stag, that o'er the woodland reigns. 

Or if t'harmonious thunder of the field 

Delight thy ravished ears, the deep-flew'd hound 

Breed up with care, strong, heavy, slow, but sure; 

Whose ears down hanging from his thick round head 

Shall sweep the morning dew, whose clanging voice 

Awake the mountain echo in her cell, 

And shake the forests : the bold Talbot kind, 

Of these the prime as white Alpine snows, 

And great their use of old." 

It is very probable that neither Shakespeare nor 
Somervile was so intimately acquainted with the Talbot, 
as to render either of their descriptions perfectly accu- 
rate. As to the dewlap noticed by the former, we see 
a striking approach to this in many of the deep-mouthed 
hounds of the present day ; which an old sporting friend 
was wont to denominate, significantly enough, " throaty 

Those specimens of the Talbot, or at least of a near 
approach to the Talbot, which have fallen under my 
observation, were animals of great size, in height about 
twenty-seven inches, bony and powerful. Their heads 
and ears were very large, with much loose skin or leather 
about the mouth, and the nose much more obtuse than 


The Talbot, 

pointed. Their countenances were expressive of a solemn 
sagacity, which rendered them highly interesting and 
even majestic. Voice very deep and sonorous. In 
colour they were inclining to what may be called the 
dark tan, though Somervile seems to think (I believe 
erroneously) that white was the distinguishing colour of 
the prime Talbot. 

The stag-hounds, which, about forty years since, were 
used by George III. manifested a considerable degree 
of affinity to the Talbot. In many of what are called 
the southern-hounds, we have a tolerable picture of the 
Talbot, only that the animal is much smaller. Mr. 
Charlesworth, who keeps the Black Swan Inn, Shude 
Hill, Manchester, has, at this time, (1826) a hound, which 
in height measures twenty-seven inches, and every way 
answers the description of the Talbot as nearly as pos- 

Something of the Talbot kind was in use amongst the 
Greeks, as may be gathered from the following descrip- 
tion of the dog of Ulysses : — 

*« He knew his Lord, he knew, and strove to meet ; 
In vain he strove to crawl and kiss his feet; 
Yet all he could, his tail, his ears, his eyes, 
Salute his Master and confess his joys. 
O had you seen him vigorous, bold, and young, 
Swift as a stag, and as a lion strong : 
Him no fell savage on the plains withstood, 
None scap'd him bosom 'd in the gloomy wood. 
His eye how piercing, and his scent how true, 
To wind the vapour in th« tainted dew. 
This dog, wliom fate thus granted to behold 
His Lord, when twenty tedious years had roirri, 


Or old English Blood-hound. 

Takes a last look, and having seen bim, dies. 

So closed for ever, faithful Argus' eyes. 

Then pity touched the mighty Warrior's soul, 

And down his cheek a tear unbidden stole." — Pope. 

As I have already hinted, there is strong reason to 
believe the Normans first introduced the Talbot or blood- 
hound into this kingdom ; and some centuries afterwards 
they were used on the borders of England and Scotland, 
Avhich were then much infested by robbers and also by 
murderers. The dogs were maintained by a tax upon 
the inhabitants, though individuals were no doubt pri- 
vately possessed of them. In Scotland, a law existed, 
that no person should deny entrance to these dogs when 
in pursuit of stolen goods upon pain of being deemed an 
accessary. Persons called Moss Troopers were pursued 
by hounds of this description. These robbers generally 
retired with their plunder through mosses (morasses), 
bogs, and sloughs, which were passable only to those 
acquainted with the various intricate paths by which alone 
these places could be crossed by a human being. This 
peculiar pursuit was distinguished by the name of Hot- 
trod, and the dogs were sometimes called slough-hounds 
and .s/<??/^^-hounds, as well as blood-hounds. 

" Upon the banks 

Of Tweed, slow winding through the vale, the seat 

O war and rapine once, ere Britons knew 

The sweets of peace, or Anna's dread commands 

To lasting leagues the haughty rivals aw'd. 

There dwelt a pilfering race, well train'd and skill'd 

In all the mysteries of theft, the spoil 

Their only substance, feuds and war their sport: 


The Talbot. ! 

Veil'd in the shades of night, they ford the stream. 

Then, prowling far and near, whate'er they seize j 

Becomes their prey j nor flocks nor herds are safe, j 

Nor stalls protect the steer, nor strong-bart'd doors ( 

Secure the favourite horse. Soon as the morn j 

Reveals his wrongs, with ghastly visage wan ' 

The plunder'd owner stands, and from his lips 

A thousand thronging curses burst their way : i 

He calls his stout allies, and in a line { 

His faithful hound he leads, then with a voice j 

That utters loud his rage, attentive cheers : 

Soon the sagacious brute, his curling tail i 

Flourish'd in air, low bending plies around I 

His busy nose, the steaming vapour snufFs i 

Inquisitive, nor leaves one turf untried, ' 

Till, conscious of the recent stains, his heart 

Beats quick ! bis snuffling nose, his active tail, \ 

Attest his joy ; then with deep opening mouth. 

That makes the welkin tremble, he proclaims \ 

Th' audacious felon ; foot by foot he marks j 

His winding way, while all the listening crowd j 

Applaud his reasonings. O'er the watery ford, I 

Dry sandy heaths, and stony barren hills. 

O'er beaten paths, with men and beasts distain'd, ' 

Unerring he pursues ; till at the cot i 

Arriv'd, and seizing by his guilty throat \ 

The caitiff vile, redeems the captive prey ; ( 

So exquisitely delicate his sense !" 


The chieftains and great men who resided on or near j 

the borders of the two kingdoms some centuries ago, ! 

encouraged, rather than repressed, the depredations j 

which were here committed ; and in which, indeed, j 

themselves occasionally joined. « 

Admitting, therefore, that the Talbot was the source j 

whence have sprung all our present varieties of the hound | 


Of various Hounds. 

tribe, we may regard as the first remove that large dog 
used a century ago in the pursuit of the stag, and which 
it is well known, would perseveringly continue the chase 
of the hunted deer in defiance of any obstacle, and even 
through a herd of the same animals. 

The southern-hoimd is smaller than the doe: last 
noticed ; but retains as much, if not more, of the Talbot 
blood ; in fact, what is called a thorough southern- 
hoimd, may be regarded as a smaller kind of Talbot. 
The first remove from the southern-hound is the kibbley 
many of which may be seen in Lancashire, particularly 
in the neighbourhood of Manchester. The Ashton (a 
few miles from Manchester) pack of harriers is composed 
of hounds of this description, and there are few, if any, 
better harriers to be found in the kingdom. The Roch- 
dale harriers are of the same description, as well as 
several other packs in the same neighbourhood. 

In some parts, beagles are used in the pursuit of the 
hare ; and these may be divided into two classes — the 
large and the lap-dog beagle. These dogs appear like 
dwarfs in the hound tribe, and are distinguishable by 
their short legs and elongated bodies. 

There are many hounds to be met with resolvable to 
none of the classes above enumerated, but which appear 
to be a mixture of the whole ; nothing, indeed, is more 
common than an union of the large harrier and the 
beagle for the pursuit of the hare ; and homids thus 
bred, are well calculated for the purpose just mentioned. 
As the stag hound already noticed, constituted the 
first remove from the Talbot, and was nearly the same 
height, but not so heavy, it may be supposed, that the 


The Fox-hound. 

large lurcher or something of the greyhound kind, was 
employed in his production. It will be more difficult to 
account for the immediate origin of the southern-hound, 
unless, indeed, we suppose, that accident produced a 
few Talbots of a smaller kind, and hence they were pro- 
pagated. The same sort of reasoning may be applied 
to the beagle, while the fox-hound of the present day is 
evidently a mixture of the whole ; and as the crosses for 
the production of this animal have been directed by the 
different opinions of a number of individuals, so we may 
perceive the reason of that great variety in these animals 
which cannot have escaped the notice even of the most 
indifferent observer. Yet, generally speaking, sufficient 
reflection has not been exerted in the production of the 
fox-hound — speed has been the principal object of con- 
sideration, and on this account fox-hounds have been 
produced with such inferior olfactory organs, that they 
were utterly incapable of pursuing the chase unless the 
atmosphere was as favourable to scent as possible. 

It became the fashion also to consider a small head in 
the fox-hound as indispensable to the beauty of his 
appearance, which is utterly incompatible with exquisite 
sense of smell. — It is a very well-known fact, that the 
sense of smell varies very much in dogs ; or, to speak as 
a sportsman, some of them possess better noses than 
others. In dogs with broad heads, the os aethmoides, 
or sive bone, is much larger than in narrow headed dogs ; 
the laminae cribrose, or the sive itself, is therefore more 
capacious, and contams more openings ; so that the olfac- 
tory nerves, which pass through it, are more numerous, 
and are divided more minutely, and thus that exquisite 


Sense of Smell. 

acuteness of smell is produced, which is found to obtain 
in the Talbot, and all dogs with broad heads : this excel- 
lence or superiority of the olfactory organs is further 
assisted by the largeness and flexibility of the lips and 
skin about the nose, which thus admit of a much greater 
extension of the olfactory nerves, and render them more 
susceptible of external impressions. The olfactory nerves 
resemble a bunch of small white cords, one end of which 
is connected with the brain, while the other, descending 
the head, spreads into numerous ramifications, reaching 
to the edges of the lips as well as to the extremity of the 


Hence the inferiority of the greyhound's sense of smell 
will be easily perceived : his head is narrow, while his 
lips are thin and compressed ; and in consequence of this 
inflexibility, and the contracted structure of the head, 
the requisite breadth and extension of nerve are inad- 
missible ; and to make up, as it might seem, for the 
defect, nature has endowed limi with a celerity which is 
not to be met with in any other species of the dog. 

All dogs, therefore, with broad heads, must possess 
superior organs of smell ; but it does not appear that a 
narrow or sharp nose presents any obstacle, as the main 
bulk of the olfactory nerves is situated in the head. The 
wolf and the fox appear to have sharp noses ; but their 
heads are remarkably broad and capacious : — their olfac- 
tory organs are vmquestionably exquisite. 

Somervile seems to have been completely ignorant 
respecting the cause of the dog's sense of smell. Beck- 
ford was equally so. The following epistle, however, 
throws a flood of light upon the subject, of which it is 



Sense of Smell. 

also a very strong and admirable illustration. Will. 
Deane, in writing to Lord Fitzwilliam, his master, 
observes, " that he could not guess at Lord Foley's dis- 
like to the hound called Glider, then sent, which was 
of the best blood of the country, being got by Mr. Mey- 
nell's Glider out of Lord Fitzwilliam's Blossom, and was 
moreover the most promising yovmg hound he had ever 
entered, unless his Lordship took a distaste to the large- 
tiess of his head ; but he begged leave to assert, although 
it might appear a trifle out of size, there was a world of 
serious mischief against the foxes contained in it." — 
Glider proved himself a first-rate hound ; his superiority 
indeed was so manifest, that he became a favourite stal- 
lion hound, " notwithstanding the magnitude and inele- 
gance of his head." 

Wlien Mr. Hay hunted the country in the neighbour- 
hood of Newcastle-under-lyme (at present hunted by Mr. 
Wicksted), I recollect noticing the exertions of a hound 
(Gaoler, I believe, he was called) whose head was con- 
sidered out of proportion, but who was, nevertheless, the 
best hound in the pack ; and I make no doubt, should 
these remarks fall under the observation of Mr. Hay, that 
he will have a perfect recollection of this hound, and, for 
aught I know, he may still be in possession of him. 

The Quorndon pack, though it has frequently changed 
masters, has always stood deservedly high in the estima- 
tion of the fox-hunter. These hounds are uncommonly 
fleet, and, as I observed some pages back, are calculated 
for Leicestershire. The Duke of Rutland's are of the 
same description, and hunt a similar country. Lord 
Lonsdale's hounds, though they hunt the neighbourhood 
of Melton, differ from the two former packs both in ap- 


Various Hounds. 

pearance and in their style of hunting : they are, for the 
most part, large, leggy clogs, and are neither so quick in 
drawing, nor so fleet in the chase. The Cheshire hounds 
(Sir Harry Mainwaring's) are much like the Quorndon 
and the Duke of Rutland's ; and, as far as I am able 
to form an opinion from considerable observation, are 
equal to any fox-hounds in the kingdom, a circumstance 
indeed which I have already noticed in the earlier pages 
of this volume. Mr. Wicksted's hounds, when they fell 
under my notice, presented the appearance of being 
calculated for business, but it was his first season ; he 
had not had sufficient time to render them complete as a 
pack, though from what I noticed of this gentleman, I am 
persuaded that every exertion will be made to render 
them so as soon as possible. I might extend similar ob- 
servations to many other packs which I have followed, 
but it is no way necessary ; those who are disposed to 
breed and improve, if possible, fox-hounds, will find 
ample materials for the purpose ; nor have I the least 
doubt, that they are still susceptible of improvement, 
which will require some little time to accomplish, and can 
only be brought about by a variety of crosses. 

The best fox-hounds, perhaps, that were ever seen, 
were those bred by the late Colonel Thornton ; and this 
gentleman, to accomplish his purpose, resorted to the 
method I have just mentioned. Madcap and Lounger, 
two of his most celebrated fox-hounds, could scarcely be 
considered as thoroughly English, since, on the side of 
the sire, they were of Continental extraction. Colonel 
Thornton, however, was never possessed of many fox- 
hounds—about sixteen or twenty couple, if I correctly 


Speed of the Fox-hound. 

understood Sir Edward Smith Dodsworth, as we rode 
together towards the town of Pontefract, after a long and 
distressing run with the Bads worth, in the month of 
November, 1825, was the extent of his pack. 

As far as relates to speed, the fox-hound may be re- 
garded as perfect ; but the same remark will not apply to 
his olfactory organs, or powers of smell : if the perfection 
of these two quaUties could be united, nothing more could 
be desired. I am aware that the Talbot, so celebrated 
for his exquisite sense of smell, was slow in the pursuit ; 
this observation is equally applicable to the southern 
hound ; and the question is, whether or not it would be 
possible to unite the olfactory organs of the southern 
hound to that speed and dash which renders fox-hunting 
so superior to every other species of the chase. That 
such a desirable object is susceptible of accomplishment, 
little doubt can be entertained ; and indeed, the instance 
already noticed of Glider and Gaoler, seem to place the 
matter beyond a doubt. 

Of late years, speed has been the principal object of 
consideration in the breeding of hounds. In 1824, I 
happened to visit Knowsley, near Liverpool, the resi- 
dence of the Earl of Derby, where his lordship's hounds 
are kept in smnmer. Of course I visited the kennel, 
when Jonathan, the huntsman, earnestly directed my 
attention to a bitch, which, he exultingly remarked, coidd 
" run four miles in less time than a greyhound !" — Lord 
Derby's hounds exhibit the appearance of fox-hounds, 
though used for the pursuit of the stag. 

At all events, whenever a sportsman determines upon 
breeding hounds, the individuals selected for the purpose 


Breeding Hounds. 

should be distinguished for some good quality, or indeed 
for as many good qualities as possible. On this subject, I 
will quote the opinion of Beckford ; and also the notions 
of Somervile : 

*' Consider (says the former) the size, shape, colour, 
constitution, and natural disposition of the dog you breed 
from ; as well as the fineness of his nose ; his stoutness, 
and method of hunting. On no accovmt breed from one 
that is not stout ^ that is not tender-nosed, or that is a 
skirter. — Somervile enjoins still further : 

" Observe with care his shape, sort, colour, size : 
Nor will sagacious huntsmen less regard 
His inward habits ; the vain babbler shun, 
Ever loquacious, ever in the wrong ; 
His foolish ofTspring shall offend thy ears 
With false alarms, and loud impertinence. 
Nor less the shifting cur avoid, that breaks 
Illusive from the pack ; to the next hedge 
Devious he strays, there ev'ry meuse he tries, 
If haply then he cross the steaming scent, 
Away he flies, vain-glorious j and exults 
As of the pack supreme, and in his speed 
And strength unrivall'd. Lo ! cast far behind 
His vcx'd associates pant, and lab'ring strain 
To climb the steep ascent. Soon as they reach 
Th' insulting boaster, his false courage fails. 
Behind he lags, doom'd to the fatal noose. 
His master's hate, and scorn of all the field. 
What can from such be hop'd, but a base brood 
Of coward curs, a frantic, vagrant race ?" 

" It is the judicious cross that makes the complete pack. 
The faults and imperfections in one breed, may be rec- 
tified in another ; and if this is properly attended to, 1 



Breeding Hounds. 

see no reason why the breedmg of hounds may not 
improve, till improvement can go no farther. If ever you 
find a cross hit, always pursue it. — Never put an old dog 
to an old bitch. — Be careful that they are healthy which 
you breed from, or you are not likely to have a healthy 
offspring. — Should a favourite dog skirt a little, put him 
to a thorough line-hunting bitch, and such a cross may 
succeed : my objection to the breeding from such a hound 
is, that as skirting is what most fox-hounds acquire from 
practice, you had better not make it natural to them. 

" The feeder should watch over the bitches with a 
cautious eye, and separate such as are going to be proud, 
before it is too late. The advances they make frequently 
portend mischief as well as love ; and, if not prevented 
in time, will not fail to set the whole kennel together by 
the ears, and may occasion the death of your best dogs : 
'care only can prevent it. — 

Mark well the wanton females of thy pacli, 
That curl their taper tails, and frisking court 
Their pyebald mates enamour'd ; their red eyes 
Flash fires impure ; nor rest, nor food they take, 
Goaded by furious love. In sep'rate cells 
Confine them now, lest bloody civil wars 
Annoy thy peaceful state. Somervile. 

"It is advisable to breed early in the year : January, 
February, and March, are the best months. Late pup- 
pies seldom come to much ; if there are any such, put 
them to the best walks. — When bitches begin to get big, 
they should cease to hunt : it frequently proves fatal to 
the whelps ; sometimes to the bitch herself; nor is it safe 
for them to remain much longer in the kennel. — If "pne 


Treatment of Wheliis. 

bitch has many puppies, more than she can well rear, 
you may put some of them to another bitch ; or if you 
destroy any of them, you may keep the best-coloured. 
They sometimes will have an extraordinary number. 

" I have known (says Beckford) an instance of one 
having fifteen ; and a friend of mine, whose veracity 1 
cannot doubt, has assured me that a hound in his pack, 
brought forth sixteen, all alive. When you breed from 
a very favourite sort, and can have another bitch warded 
at the same time, it will be of great service, as you may 
then save all the puppies. — Give particular orders, that 
the bitches be well fed with flesh; and let the whelps 
remain till they are well able to take care of themselves. 
They will soon learn to lap milk, which will relieve the 
mother. — The bitches, when their whelps are taken away 
from them, should be physicked ; I generally give them 
three purging balls, one every other morning. If a bitch 
brings only one or two puppies, and you have another 
bitch that will take them, by putting the puppies to her, 
the former will soon be fit to hunt again ; she should, 
however, be physicked first; and if her dugs are anointed 
with brandy and water, it will also be of service. The 
distemper makes dreadful havock with whelps at their 
walks; greatly owing, I believe, to the little care that is 
taken of them there. I am in doubt whether it might 
not be better to breed them up yourself, and have a ken- 
nel on purpose. You have a large orchard paled in, 
which would suit them exactly ; and what else is wanted 
might be easily obtained. There is, however, an ob- 
jection which perhaps may strike you : — If the distemper 
once gets amongst them, they must all have it ; yet, not- 


Treatment of Whelps. 

withstanding that, as they will be constantly well fed, 
and will lie warm, I am confident it would be the saving 
of many lives. If you should adopt this method, you 
must remember to use them early to go in couples ; and 
when they get of a proper age, they must be walked out 
often ; for should they remain confined, they would 
neither have the shape, health, nor understanding they 
ought to have. When I kept harriers, I bred up some 
of the puppies at a distant kennel ; but having no ser- 
vants there to exercise them properly, I found them much 
inferior to such of their brethren, as had the luck to 
survive the many difficulties and dangers they had 
undergone at their walks ; these were afterwards equal 
to anythhig, and afraid of nothing ; while those that had 
been nursed with so much care, were weakly, and timid, 
and had every disadvantage attending private education. 
*' I have often heard as an excuse for hounds not hunt- 
ing a cold scent, that they were too high bred. 

I confess, I know not what that means :* but this I know, 
that hounds are frequently too ill-bred to be of any service. 
It is judgment in the breeder, and patience afterwards 
in the huntsman, that make them hunt. 

* The term " toe high bred " is, however, in general use among Sports- 
men, by whom it is very well understood, and is, beyond all question, suffi- 
ciently expressive. It is applied to light, fleet hounds, with small heads, 
(and consequently very inferior noses) which are only able to pursue under 
the most favourable circumstances, er when the scent is breast high. Sir 
Harry Mainwaring's, Mr. Osbaldeston's, and the Duke of Rutland's are 
all as highly bred perhaps as is consistent with the nature of the business ; 
they can, however, both hunt and run; but of all fox-hounds which have 
fallen under my observation, those of Mr. Mcynell, of Hoarecross Hall, 
Staflbrdshirc, appealed the highest bred, and were, in my opinion, rather 
too highbj bred. 


Naming of Whelps. 

'* Young hounds are commonly named when first put 
out, and sometimes indeed ridiculously enough ; nor is 
it easy, when you breed many, to find suitable or har- 
monious names for all ; particularly, as it is usual to name 
all the whelps of one fitter, with the same letter, which 
(to be systematically done) should also be the initial letter 
of the dog that got them, or the bitch that bred them. 
A baronet of my acquaintance, a literal observer of the 
above rule, sent three young hounds of one litter to a 
friend, all their names beginning, as he said, with the 
letter G. Goivler, Govial, and Galloper. 

*' It is indeed of little consequence what huntsmen call 
their hounds ; yet, if you dislike an unmeaning name, 
would it not be as well to leave the naming of them till 
they are brought home ? They soon learn their names, 
and a shorter fist would do. — Damons and Delias would 
not then be necessary ; nor need the sacred names of 
Titus and Trajan be thus degraded. It is true there are 
many odd names which custom authorises ; yet I cannot 
think, because some drunken fellow or other, has 
christened his dog Tipler, or Tapster, that there is the 
least reason to follow the example. Pipers and Fidlers, 
for the sake of their music, we will not object to ; but 
Tiplers and Tapsters your kennel will be much better 

In regard to the size as well as the colour of hounds, 
it is not fikely that there should be an union of opinion ; 
but if the matter be attentively considered, it will, I 
think, be found that hounds of the middle size are the 
strongest, and capable of enduring the greatest fatigue. 
A good hound cannot be of a bad colour, it may be said : 


Form of the Hound. 

but a diversity of colour in a pack, has at least an inter- 
esting and beautiful appearance. Of the form of the 
hound, there will not be much difference of opinion : 

" His glossy skin, or yellow-pied, or blue. 

In lights or shades, by nature's pencil drawn, 

Reflects the various tints : his ears and legs 

Fleckt here and there, in gay enamel'd pride. 

Rival the speckled pard ; his rush-grown tail 

O'er his broad back bends in an ample arch ; 

On shoulders clean, upright and firm he stands ; 

His round cat foot, straight hams, and wide-spread thighs, 

And his low dropping chest, confess his speed, 

His strength, his wind, or on the steepy hill, 

Or far-extended plain ; in every part 

So well-proportion'd, that the nicer skill 

Of Phidias himself can't blame thy choice. 

Of such compose thy pack. But here a mean 

Observe, nor the large hound prefer, of size 

Gigantic; he in the thick-woven covert 

Painfully tugs, or in the thorny brake, 

Torn and embarrass'd, bleeds ; but, if too small, 

The pigmy brood in every furrow swims; 

jMoil'd in the clogging clay, panting they lag 

Behind inglorious; or else, shivering creep, 

Benumb'd and faint, beneath the sheltering thorn. 

For hounds of middle size, active and strong, 

Will better answer all thy various ends, 

And crown thy pleasing labours with success." 

It has been observed by Beckford, that "it is the 
judiciqus cross that makes the complete pack ;" and in 
this I perfectly agree with him ; but in writing to his 
friend, he further remarks : — " A very famous sportsman 
has told me that he frequently breeds from brothers and 
sisters : as I should be very unwilling to urge any thing 


Breediii" in and in. 

in opposition to such an authority, you had better try 
it." Such a system I cannot recommend for the following 
reasons : 

In the first place, I would wish it to be fully impressed 
upon the mind of the sportsman, that, whenever, by 
judicious crosses or otherwise, he has obtained hounds 
of first-rate excellence, he must, nevertheless, in order 
to preserve such excellence, call in the assistance of 
other breeds of repute ; smce, if he confine the propa- 
gation to the same family, the strain will degenerate, 
and m the thu'd or fourth generation will become literally 
good for nothing. — Relationship should be as much as 
possible avoided in breeding, nor can any better plan be 
adopted than procuring either the dog or bitch from a 
distant part of the country. 

The ill consequences of breeding in and in, to use a 
sportsman's phrase, are now tolerably well known, and 
the remark is not confined to hounds only, but would seem 
to apply equally perhaps to the whole circle of nature. 
The judicious farmer, aware of the evil, spares neither 
expense nor pains in crossing his horses, cows, and sheep ; 
his pigs and poultry. Even the human species, by the 
intermarriages of famihes, strikingly exemplifies these 
observations — degeneracy of mind as of body is thus 
produced ; scrofulous diseases are the certain result ; 
and hence scrofula is less frequent in large towns ; but is 
uniformly found to prevail in all secluded villages, where 
the continued intercourse of thesame families has existed 
for a few generations. 

If, therefore, the object of the sportsman be to pro- 
cure and maintain a good breed of hounds, let him have 


Treatment of Young Hounds. 

recourse to other breeds of undisputed merit, if from a 
distant part the better perhaps ; but if his neighbour's 
dogs stand in no degree of affinity, he need not be at the 
trouble of seeking for greater strangers. 

The foregoing remarks are not exclusively appUcable 
to animated nature, but may be very justly extended to 
the vegetable world : hence the farmer never sows corn 
on the land where it was produced ; and hence seed 
potatoes grown in Scotland are imported into Lancashire, 
where this useful vegetable attains the utmost possible 

A bitch will become proud very frequently before she 
is twelve months old, the first symptoms of which are 
the red appearance and sweUing of the vulva; but she 
will not, for some days, suffer the dog to ward her : 
however, as the heat advances, she will play and dally 
with him, and manifest every inclination to copulate. 
But as these animals grow generally till they are two 
years old, they ought not to be suffered to breed before 
that period. Nor is it a little remarkable, that, if you 
suffer a bitch to receive several dogs, such as a terrier, a 
greyhound, a bulldog, &c. she will frequently produce 
puppies of all the different kinds. 

Young hounds should be tied up or confined as little 
as possible, as it spreads their feet, and they become out 
at the elbows, and bandy-legged. The same effects will 
be produced in a full-grown dog, but in a much less 
degree. Dogs of all ages should have free access to 
good clean water, a clear stream if possible. 

The period of gestation in the bitch is about sixty- 
three days. The young are brought forth blind : the 


Dog's Age. 

two eye-lids are not merely glued together, but shut up 
with a membrane, which is torn off as soon as the muscles 
of the upper eye-lids acquire sufficient strength to over- 
come this obstacle to vision, which generally happens 
about the tenth day. At this period the young annuals 
are extremely clumsy and awkward. The bones of the 
head are not completed ; the body and muzzle are bloated, 
and the whole figure appears ill-designed. Their growth, 
however, is rapid ; and in about six weeks they acquire 
the use of all their senses. When four months old, they 
lose their teeth, which are quickly replaced, and are 
never afterwards changed. 

A dog's age may be tolerably well ascertained by the 
appearance of his teeth. A young dog's teeth generally 
look clean and white ; — at an early period of his existence, 
his front teeth are serrated, and as he increases in age, 
this saw-like appearance gradually wears out. At four 
years old, or perhaps sooner, it is no longer observable : 
the teeth turn yellow, ftide, and drop out as the animal 
grows old ; and if he be fed principally on bones, his 
teeth become short and blunt at an early period. A dog, 
if worked hard, will turn grey at eight or nine years of 
age, and exhibit every symptom of decay — such as bad 
sight, loss of hearing, &c. Fourteen years is the general 
period allotted for the life of a dog ; but if he be kept to 
hard labour each season, he will seldom live so long. 


Diseases of Hounds and Methods of Cure. 

Young hounds should be put out to quarters, as soon 
as they are fit to leave the bitch ; and, if there are suffi- 
cient quarters for the whole of them so much the better. 
They will of course be taken into the kennel towards the 
spring of the following year : sometimes it will happen, 
that young hounds manifest a disposition to chase, and 
ultimately to worry, sheep, on which account, it becomes 
necessary to take them into the kennel at an early period. 

" When young hounds are first taken into the kennel, 
they should be kept separate from the pack ; and as it 
will happen at a time of the year, when there is little or 
no hunting, you may easily give them up one of the ken- 
nels, and grass court adjoining. Their play frequently 
ends in a battle ; it is therefore less dangerous, when they 
are all equally matched. What Somervile says on this 
subject is exceedingly beautiful. — 

'• But here with watchful and observant eye. 
Attend their frolics, which too often end 
In bloody broils and death. High o'er thy head 
Wave thy resounding whip, and with a voice 
Fierce-menacing o'er-rule the stern debate, 
And quench their kindling rage ; for oft in sport 
Begun, combat ensues, growling they snarl. 
Then, on their haunches rear'd, rampant they seize 
E^ch other's throats, with teeth, and claws, in gore 
Besmcar'd, they wound, they tear, till on the ground, 


Quarrelsome Hounds. 

Panting, half dead, the conquer'd champion lies : 
Then sudden all the base ignoble crowd 
Loud-clam'ring seize the helpless worried wretch, 
And thirsting for his blood, drag different ways 
His mangled carcass on th'ensanguin'd plain. 
O breasts of pity void ! t'oppress the weak, 
To point your vengeance at the friendless head, 
And with one mutual cry insult the fallen ! 
Emblem too just of man's degenerate race." 

'* If you find they take a dislike to any particular hound 
the safest way will be to remove him ; or it is very pro- 
bable they will kill him at last. When a feeder hears 
the hounds quarrel in the kennel, he halloos to them to 
stop them. He then goes in amongst them, and flogs 
every hound he can come near. — How much more reason- 
able as well as more efficacious would it be, were he to 
see which wei"e the combatants, before he speaks to them. 
Punishment would then fall as it ought, on the guilty only. 
In all packs there are some hounds more quarrelsome 
than the rest ; and it is to them we owe all the mischief 
that is done. If you find chastisement cannot quiet 
them, it may be prudent to break their holders ; for since 
they are not necessary to them for the meat they have to 
eat, they are not likely to serve them in any good purpose. 

** Young hounds should be fed twice a day, as they 
seldom take kindly at first to the kennel-meat, and the 
distemper is very likely to seize them at this time. It is 
better not to round them till they are thoroughly settled ; 
nor should it be put off till the hot weather, for then they 
would bleed too much." 

Beckford says, "if any of the dogs are thin over the 
back, or any more quarrelsome than the rest, it will be 


Worming Puppies. 

of use to cut them : I also spay such bitches (says he) as 
I think I shall not want to breed from ; they are more 
useful, are stouter, and are always in better order : be- 
sides it is absolutely necessary, if you hunt late in the 
spring ; or your pack will be very short for want of it. It 
may be right to tell you, that the latter operation does not 
always succeed ; it will be necessary therefore to employ 
a skilful person, and one on whom you can depend ; for 
if it is ill done, though they cannot have puppies, they 
will go to heat notwithstanding." 

I must confess I am no strenuous advocate for the 
practise of reducing hounds to the tieuter gender, or at 
least depriving them of the power of procreation ; nor 
can I help thinking, that, with the loss of this power, 
hounds suffer a diminution of strength also — they are 
certainly more easily kept in condition ; in fact, they are 
apt to become too fat. If, however, it be determined to 
resort to spaying, it is advisable to have the operation 
performed at an early period, when the iuiimal is only a 
few months old, for instance. 

Worming puppies is a ridiculous operation ; — it will 
not have the effect, which is erroneously attributed to it, 
namely, of rendering the animal incapable of biting when 
labouring under paroxysms of hydrophobia How it ever 
could be supposed that extracting a sinew which runs 
longitudinally under a dog's tongue Avould have the above 
effect, is a matter of surprise ; and I blush at my own 
thoughtlessness in adopting in several instances the fool- 
ish idea, the offspring of ignorance, cind putting an animal 
to pain, where no possible benefit could ever be reason- 
ably expected. 


Diseases of Hounds. 

Dogs, and young ones in particular, should be kept 
in the country. If when a whelp be taken from its dam, 
it is fed upon light food, such as potatoes and buttermilk, 
with a little oatmeal, &c. and seldom or never indulged 
with carrion, or flesh of any kind, it will scarcely ever be 
attacked with the distemper, a disease which has been 
long known in this country, and which makes frightful 
havock amongst dogs bred in towns, highly fed, and which 
have little exercise : — exercise in particular is a very es- 
sential requisite to the health of young dogs. 

Hounds are subject to all the disorders to Avhich dogs 
in general are liable, and there are several diseases which 
would appear peculiar to them, which will be pointed 
out in their proper place in the course of the following 

Young hounds, however, placed at good quarters, are 
little liable to disease ; but are much more subject to ill- 
ness when taken into the kennel. I shall give a list of the 
diseases to which hounds are hable whether in or out of 
the kennel ; in which, I am sorry to say, I shall be able 
to derive little, if any, assistance from Beckford ; since 
his notions on the subject are crude, and his method of 
treatment, in a great degree, erroneous. 

Wild animals reclaimed from a state of nature and do- 
mesticated, are susceptible of great change and variety 
in form, colour, and character ; and owing no doubt ta 
being thus compelled to assume in some degree, an arti- 
ficial mode of life, they are rendered more liable to dis- 
orders. Animals in a state of nature are little subject to 
disease : and though the wild dog subsists on flesh and 
carrion, it is more than probable he is never troubled, 



The Distemper. 

with what is distinguished by the appellation of the dis- 
temper, or with any of that long catalogue of disorders, 
to which he is rendered obnoxious after having become 
the companion of man. 

T/te Distempei: — The distemper frequently attacks a 
hound before he has attained his first year. As a pre- 
liminary observation, it may be remarked, that the same 
membrane which lines the nostrils extends down the 
wind-pipe into the lungs ; and the distemper, in the first 
instance, may be regarded as an inflammation of this 
membrane ; which, if not timely removed, extends down 
to the lungs, where suppvu*ation will soon be produced ; 
when the animal's eye will become dull, accompanied 
by a mucous discharge, a cough, and loss of appetite. 
As the disease advances it presents various appearances, 
but is frequently attended with twitchings about the head, 
while the animal becomes excessively weak in the loins 
and hinder extremities ; indeed he appears completely 
emaciated, and smells intolerably. At length, the twitch- 
ings assume the appearance of convulsive fits, accompanied 
with giddiness, which cause the dog to turn round : he 
has a constant disposition to dung, with obstinate cos- 
tiveness or incessant purging. 

On the first appearance of the symptoms which I have 
described, I should recommend the dog to be bled* 
very freely and his body opened with a little castor oil 
or syrvip of buckthorn : this will generally remove the 
disease altogether, if apphed the moment the first symp- 

* The quantity of blood taken to be regulated by the age and size of 
the dog. 


Kemedies for the Distemper. 

toms appear. If, however, this treatment should not 
have the desh'ecl effect, and a cough ensues, accompa- 
nied with a discharge at the nose, give him from two 
grains to eight of tartar emetic (according to the age and 
size of the dog) every other day. When the nervous 
symptoms ensue, which I have ah'eady described, ex- 
ternal stimulants (such as sal-ammoniac and oil, equal 
parts) should be rubbed along the course of the spinal 
marrow, and tonics given internally, such as bark, Sec. 

Of the various remedies, the following was given with 
success to a dog, so afflicted as to be scarcely able to 
stand : — 

Turbeth's mineral, six grains 

mixed with sulphur, and divided into three doses, one 
given every other morning. Let a few days elapse, and 
repeat the course. 
Another : 

Calomel, one grain and a half 
rhubarb, five grains 

given every other day for a week. 
Another : 

Antimonial powder, sixteen grains 
powdered fox-glove, one grain 

made into four bolusses with conserve of roses, and one 
given at night, and another the next morning for two 

I have known whitening administered for the distem- 
per, a table spoonful every morning, with a little opening 
physic occasionally. 

I have uniformly found a complete cure effected from 
copious and repeated venesection in the early stage of the 

i-j: D 2 


Description of 

distemper, accompanied with a little opening medicine, 
syrup of buckthorn, for instance. In the kennel of Sir 
Harry Mainwaring, the distemper generally swept away 
a third of the young hounds at least. In the present year 
(1826) my system of treating the distemper was adopted, 
and a single whelp has not been lost ; in fact, not one has 
been seriously affected. Head, the huntsman, bled them 
freely on the first indication of the disease, and admini- 
stered an opening dose, which effectually answered the 

The following scientific description of the distemper 
and its mode of treatment, cannot fail to be highly inter- 
esting : 

" A little black spaniel, six months old, very fat and 
playftd, gradually became listless and irritable ; his eyes 
suffiised with water, his drooping ears, tenesmus, rough 
coat, dyspnoea, and frequent cough, announced that the 
disease called the Distemper was at hand. In this state 
he ran about for several days, when the difficulty of 
breathing increased. His flanks beat violently, and he 
shewed signs of feeling great pain when his sides were 
pressed upon. Soon after he became slightly convulsed, 
and by his continual and melancholy cry, both day and 
night, proved that he was suffering from severe bodily 
pahi. The convulsions increased and became incessant ; 
his debility and emaciation were daily more apparent, 
and at the expiration of three weeks he died. 

For four days before his death, he lay in a supine quiet 
state, perfectly conscious of what was passing near him ; 
and it was only a few hoiu-s previous to his dissolution, 
that he became comatose, and perfectly insensible. Dur- 
ing the whole period of his illness, there was no aber- 


the Distemper. 

ration oi' mind ; he was irritable, snapped at tliose who 
approached him, foamed at the mouth, but did not refuse 
the small quantities of broth, milk, and other liquids 
which were occasionally offered him. 

" Dissection. — The carcass was lean, but on opening 
the abdomen, the omentum, intestines, and other viscera 
were loaded with fot. The liver was of a dark dull red 
colour congested with blood, the gall bladder distended 
with greenish bile, the stomach and intestines were dis- 
coloured with viscid yellow bile, some of which was con- 
tained in the stomach. 

"The kidneys were free from disease, and the urinary 
bladder was full of urine. 

*' Thorax or chest — no preternatural adhesions or 
symptoms of inflanniiation of the pleura costalis existed. 
The lungs were highly inflamed and of a dark brown co- 
lour, i-endered heavy and solid by the effusion of coagu- 
lable lymph. On cutting into their substance numerous 
drops of white purulent matter escaped from the bronchise, 
and on a careful examination they were found completely 
full and choaked up with matter. 

" The trachea Avas inflamed, and contained a good deal 
of pus of the same nature. 

*' The heart and large blood vessels adjoining were 
distended with dark, black, coagulated blood ; the sub- 
stance of the heart itself was much inflamed ; and a small 
quantity of serum was observed in the cavities of the 
pleura and pericardium. 

" A young fox-hound having died of the Distemper, I 
proceeded to ascertain the causes of his death and com- 
menced with an examination of the nervous system. For 



Appearances of the Distemper 

this purpose a considerable portion of the cranium was 
removed, by first sawing through the frontal sinuses 
transversely, and continuing the instrument laterally and 
downwards through the occipital bone : the bony pro- 
cesses peculiar to carnivorous animals, which assist in 
forming the falx major, were taken away, and the brain 
fairly exposed to view. 

" The frontal sinuses were filled with a thin, white 
fluid, resembling pus, which flowed out freely from the 
opening made by the saw. 

" The dura mater was perfectly healthy. 

"The veins of the pia mater covering the left hemi- 
sphere of the cerebrum were more dilated with blood 
than those on the opposite side. The substance of the 
brain was firm, and bore no appearance of disease ; nor 
was there any iilteration in the structvu-e of the ventricles. 
The origins of all the nerves were clear and distinct. 
The olfactory pair were extremely large, and looked 
more like processes of brain than nerves. The pineal 
gland was present in the form of a small pellucid speck, 
and was seen in its usual situation at the posterior ex- 
tremity of the third ventricle. 

" The cerebellum, the pons varolii, and the medulla 
obl^gata were healthy ; on dividing the latter, a little 
serum was found in the base of the cranium, and on hold- 
ing the dog up by the hind legs about two drachms more 
issued from the sheath of the spinal marrow. 

"The lateral and cavernous sinuses were filled with 
dark purple blood. 

" Examiiiation of the Spinal Marroiv. — An incision 
being carried from the occipital bone down to the sa- 


on Dissection. 

crum, the muscles were dissected back on each side ; and 
by several applications of the saw, the medulla was laid 
bare throughout its whole length. The spinal marrow, 
narrow at its origin, gradually increased in size as it des- 
cended to the joints. The dura mater was very firm, thin, 
and rather opaque. It could easily be separated from 
the medulla, which was of a beautiful white colour, con- 
sisting of two columns, each again divisible into several 
others ; so that there was no appearance of disease to be 
discovered in the spinal marrow or its membranes ; but 
as the vertebral veins were traced up the spinal canal, 
they became turgid and more full of blood, and when 
they had reached the middle of the cervical vertebra they 
were greatly distended, and must by their pressure on 
the spinal marrow have influenced its fiuictions. 

" Having now completed the dissection of the brain 
and spine, the thorax and abdomen became the subjects 
of inquiry. 

" The trachea was very large, and contained a puru- 
lent fluid ; its mucous coat was inflamed and corrugated. 
" The lungs presented a very peculiar appearance, es- 
pecially the left, a large portion of which was converted 
into a substance of a yellowish brown, covered with dark 
black spots, and divided from the remaining healthy part, 
which was of a florid red colour, by a complete and dis- 
tinct line of separation. 

" The discoloured lobes, on being cut into, were solid, 
and evidently impervious to the admission of air. The 
bronchial tubes were full of the same thick white pus 
noticed in my former dissection, and which exuded in 
large drops. 


" The right hmg was entirely changed into a dark 
brown mass. The internal jugular and subclavian veins 
together with the venae cavae, were distended with blood. 
The heart was enlarged, and the pericardium drawn 
tight over ii. The left auricle and ventricle contained 
blood, but the right auricle and ventricle were literally 
gorged to their utmost extent with dark grumous coagu- 
lated blood. There were no marks of preternatural 
adhesions or inflammation of the pleura costalis, nor was 
there more than one ounce of serum within its cavity. 

"'Abdomen. — There was a good deal of viscid yellow- 
ish bile in the stomach ; its villous coat was inflamed and 

" The liver was of a dark red colour congested with 

" The gall bladder was full of a greenish bile. 
^* The urinary bladder contained a straw coloured 

" The kidneys, omentum, and peritoneum, were in a 
healthy state ; but the intestines seemed to have sufl^er- 
ed from the acrimony of the bile. 

" Remarks. — From the preceding dissections it must 
be evident that the Distemper is an inflammatory disor- 
der, more particularly affecting the mucous coats of the 
bronchial tubes, and that the great congestions of blood 
found in the heart and other vital organs must arise from 
the obstruction it meets with in its passage through the 
lungs. The particular time at which the disorganisation 
commences must depend on the violence of the symp- 
toms ; and it does appear that the disease can be divided 
into three natural stages :— 


the Distemper. 

" 1st. The stage offerer and general excitement. 

" 2nd. The deposition of coagulable lymph into the 
substance of the lungs : and 

" 3rd. The effusion of matter into the bronchial tubes. 

" In drawing this view of the complaint, the liver is not 
to be overlooked ; and it would seem as if this organ was, 
by a general irritability of the system, excited to a state 
of unusual activity, and that thus, by the presence of an 
increased and vitiated state of the bile, the stomach and 
bowels were brought into a disordered condition, and 
their villous coats inflamed. 

" Upon the epidemic, contagious, or other causes pre- 
disposing to the Distemper, it is not now my intention to 
oifer any remarks ; but I shall proceed to the treatment 
which appearances after death would indicate. 

" It is necessary for me to add that I have no experi- 
ence of its efficacy, nor do I pretend to say that it will be 
successful. Indeed the object of this paper is rather to 
induce those who may have daily opportunities of be- 
coming acquainted with the complaint, by observing its 
causes, symptoms, and progress, to form an idea of its 
nature ; and lastly, by the operation of remedies and 
frequent dissections, to arrive at some certain conclusions. 

" Treatment. — At the commencement of the symptoms, 
or during the first stage of excitement, the dog should 
be bled freely, according to his age and strength. After 
wliich an emetic of tartarised antimony or ipecacuanha 
should l)e administered, and its operation promoted by 
mild bland fluids ; moderate doses of calomel, opium, and 
antimony, should be given every three or four hours, 
and the excess of bile removed by occasional doses of 


Treatment of 

castor oil. The dog should be immersed for twenty 
minutes in a warm bath, rubbed dry, and placed in clean 
warm straw ; the temperature of his apartment should 
be moderately warm, taking great care to exclude the 
cold air, which must necessarily irritate the lungs. — 
Having continued this plan for forty-eight hours, a mix- 
ture, consisting of nitre, fox-glove, and ipecacuanha, 
should be given three or four times a day until the urgent 
symptoms have subsided. Stimulants should never be 
given but when the animal appears much exhausted, and 
after the preceding measures have been adopted : a little 
white wine might then be put into the gruel, which 
should constitute his food from the primary attack. 
When recovering, little more than bread-and-milk or 
nourishing broths will be necessary. 

'* It occasionally happens that the irritability of the 
stomach is such that no medicines can be retained. In- 
jections in these cases havebeen attended with beneficial 
effects ; and therefore a solution of starch with laudanum 
should be thrown up several times in the course of twenty- 
four hours : a blister also should be applied to the region 
of the stomach. 

"With regard to the treatment of the second and 
third stages, when the first has been violent and neglect- 
ed, very little can be expected from medicine. Bleeding 
would be highly injurious; and calomel, opium, and 
antimony, combined with expectorants, would most pro- 
bably offer the greatest prospect of success. Strength 
should be carefidly supported by a nutritious diet, but 
all strong cordials ought to be avoided. 


the Di6temi>er. 

" Although it is hkely the fever accompanying the 
distemper has a pecuhar character, I am decidedly of 
opinion that there is no specific remedy against this com- 
plaint : and it is better to point out the indications of 
cure, than to enumerate a long list of medicines with 
their respective doses, the selection of which must depend 
on the circumstances of each individual case. 

Richard Williams, Surgeon." 

Aberystwith, June 10, 1825." 

I am not aware of any other remedies worth notice, 
though a great number might be added, if we could give 
credit to the stories retailed by dealers in dogs, as well 
as gamekeepers and huntsmen. Much will be foimd to 
depend on good nursing, and particularly to prevent the 
animal from taking cold. — From what I have witnessed 
of Blaine's medicine, I should not recommend it. 

It is very advisable to inoculate for the distemper. If 
you can nleet with a dog already afflicted, take a little 
mucous from his nose, and insert it up the nostrils of 
your whelp, after having prepared him by a dose or two 
of syrup of buckthorn ; if the animal does not take the 
disease, repeat the operation. By inoculating for the 
distemper, the disease will be as much less severe, as the 
inoculated small pox compared to what is called the 
natural mode of taking it. 

A dog rarely, if ever, has the distemper twice ; nor 
does it often attack him after he has attained the age of 
two years ; but frequently makes its appearance before 
the animal has reached his twelfth month. A notion be- 


The Cow Pock. 

came prevalent a few years back, that by inoculating a 
dog with the cow pock, the distemper would be pre- 

The Coiv Pock. — Dr. Jenner has asserted that by 
inoculating dogs for the cow pock, a " disease similar to 
that which is called the dog's distemper is produced, but 
in a very slight degree. What is most remarkable, (adds 
Dr. Jenner) this inoculation renders them afterwards 
unsusceptible of that affection." Dr. Jenner is certainly 
no mean authority : but, having tried the experiment a 
number of times, from what I have witnessed, I can as- 
sert, that unless much more than ordinary pains are taken 
in the operation, no disease whatever will be produced ; 
and when at length, pustules have been raised, they have 
not been attended with symptoms any way resembling 
what is called the distemper. 

The catalogue of dog diseases is extended in some 
publications to a puzzling length, where the various rami- 
fications or different stages of each disease receive a new 
name, in direct violation of that clearness and perspicuity 
so preferable, indeed so essentially requisite, in a state- 
ment of cases, many of which are frequently doubtful 
even to the skilful and experienced. Young dogs are 
very subject to worms, and appearances thus produced 
are too often mistaken for other disorders, receive various 
appellations, and are treated in the most injudicious 
manner. I have been informed that the following will 
cure the distemper ; but I have never tried it ; and am 
rather sceptical as to the fact : — 

One clove of garlic given every or every other day, or accord- 
ing to the violence of the disorder. 



Worms. — Dogs, like liuinan beings, are subject to 
worm diseases of various kinds. A disorder, generally 
distinguished by the appellation of lank madness, is pro- 
duced by short thick worms, which occasionally breed in 
the animal's stomach and intestines. This, and what is 
denominated sleeping madness, appear to be merely two 
names for the same disease. When a hound is thus 
afflicted, he will become lean, though he will feed vora- 
ciously ; as the disorder increases, his appetite in a great 
degree forsakes him ; his eyes appear dull and drowsy, 
and he will manifest an almost continual inclination for 
slumber, without being able, however, to sleep soundly — 

Take of calomel, six grains 

common soap, two scruples 

made into two bolusses, one of which to be given at 
night, and tlie other the following morning : after two 
days, the same to be repeated, and in four days more, 
give the following : 

Extract of coloquintida, two scruples 

made into three bolusses, and one given every morning ; 
on the fourth morning, give the animal a table spoonful 
of syrup of buckthorn. If the worms should not be 
entirely destroyed, in a little time repeat the course. 

Hounds are often troubled with large worms, which, 
without medicine, are occasionally voided singly or in 
clusters. Their existence may be known by the dog's 
voracity and leanness. The best remedy is the preced- 
ing, though the following may probably answer the 
purpose : 

Calomel, three grains 

jalap, twenty grains 

golden sulphur of antimony, four grains 


mixed up with butter or lard into one dose. Three of 
these doses to be given — one every other morning. 

A table spoonful or two of linseed oil, given the first 
thing in a morning, will frequently bring away a quantity 
of worms : but it can never be depended on as an effec- 
tual remedy, for the following reason : — upon the linseed 
oil being swallowed, those worms with which it comes in 
contact, that are not fastened on the intestines, but loose 
as it were, in expectation of food, will be brought away ; 
but such as are fast to the intestines (and many will 
be found so situated) stick like leeches, and thus prevent 
the effects of the oil. There is nothing so effectual as 
calomel. Calomel administered externally, in tolerable 
plenty, upon the human subject, will destroy Avorms in 
the stomach. — If the worms are situated near the anus, 
the calomel may be so completely absorbed, when taken 
inwardly, as to lose its effect before it reaches that part ; 
some tobacco smoke blown up the anus (which may 
be easily done by inserting the thin end of a pipe) will 
most completely destroy these noxious vermin, and they 
will be voided, most likely, in prodigious numbers. 

The remark which was made on the last article would 
equally apply in this place, respecting the numerous 
remedies prescribed for the same disease. What are 
mentioned throughout are such as will be found to answer 
the purpose ; and to give a number of doubtful and inef- 
fectual recipes, for the sake of making a long list, or 
giving a false air of importance to the subject, would be 
as perplexing to the reader as it would be contemptible 
and even dishonest, in the writer. 

However, for worms, generally speaking, the following 


Convulsions or Fits. 

may be regarded as a sovereign remedy, and there are 
few cases which it will not effectually cure — take 

Linseed oil, half a pint 

oil of turpentine, two drachms* 

repeat the dose, if necessary. 

Convulsions or Fits. — Complaints of this nature are 
sometimes caused by an accumulation of worms in the 
stomach, which in the first stage create giddiness, and 
end in violent convulsive paroxysms. When the com- 
plaint is to be attributed to worms, the animal will have 
an itching at the nose and fundament, and will sneeze 
frequently. In this case, the best treatment is what has 
been already prescribed for worms. When convulsions 
proceed from other causes, which may be generally 
known by a wild appearance in the animal's eyes, frothing 
at the mouth, when labouring under the most violent 
paroxysm of convulsion, the dog may be recovered by 
being thrown into the water, perhaps a bucket of water 
thrown over him might answer the purpose : but this is 
merely a temporary relief ; and to eradicate the disease, 
recourse must be had to something more effectual. In 
the first place, the animal should lose a few ounces of 
blood ( from three to six ounces, according to his size and 
strength) when the following should be administered : — 

Jalap, one scruple 

cream of tartar, half a dram 

water, one ounce 

mixed ; half taken the morning after the dog has been 
bled ; the other half in two hours after, well shaken : — 

* I am supposing for a full-grown dog. 



a rowel should afterwards be put in the neck, and kept 
open for a considerable time : the following should then 
be given : — 

Peruvian bark, half an ounce 
water, half a pint 

boiled for a few minutes and strained ; then add, sweet 
spirit of nitre, one dram : a table spoonful to be given 
every two hours, the animal afterwards to be kept on a 
mild nourishing diet. 

Wlien convulsions arise from indigestion, the following 
has generally been found efficacious : — from two to eight 
grains of tartar emetic (according to the age and size of 
the dog) and in tAvo days after, give the following : — 

Calomel, six grains 
Barbadoes aloes, half a dram 

Divide into six doses, and administer one every, or per- 
haps every other, morning, as you may judge the patient 
can bear it ; when you may give tonics, as recommended 
under the head Distetnper. 

What is called the megrim or giddiness in the head is 
a species of fit, and may be removed by bleeding. The 
same disease is, by some, &ex\ovi\\naiedi falling madness, 
(a ridiculous name certainly) from, I suppose, the animal 
occasionally falling from giddiness. When thus afflicted, 
the dog will frequently rub his feet against the sides of 
his mouth, and appear as if he had a bone in his throat. 
Any of these symptoms will give way to the treatment 
just described : and where the disorder is not very vio- 
lent, it may generally be removed by bleeding ; which, 
as it has formed a principal feature for the last few pages. 



it may not be amiss to say a word or two on the best mode 
of performing the operation under a distinct head. 

Bleed'mg. — In speaking on this subject, I am not sup- 
posing that the huntsman is a member of the medical 
profession in any of its branches, but sufficiently skilled 
in anatomy to know a vein from an artery, which is all 
the knowledge requisite for performing the operation of 
bleeding a dog. A vein* may be distinguished from an 
artery by its having no pulsation ; if an artery of any 
consequence should be divided, the blood will flow in 
irregular gushes, it will be difficult to stop, and may cause 
the death of the dog. However, there is little danger 
of such an unpleasant circumstance happening, and an 
ordinary degree of attention is quite sufficient to obviate 
it. The most convenient, and the best place to bleed a 
dog, is to open a vein (the jugular vein) longitudinally, in 
the side of the neck, round which a cord should be first 
tied ; and if the huntsman is not expert at handling a 
lancet, he may purchase a fleam at any of the shops 
where surgical instruments are sold, which, by means of 
springs, is so contrived that the greatest bungler need 
be under no apprehension. Those who sell this instru- 
ment will describe the method of using it, which indeed 
is so obvious at first view as to render elucidation super- 
fluous in this place. 

If, after the vein is opened, the animal should not 
bleed freely, pressure a little below the orifice will cause 
the blood to flow. When sufficient Ijlood has been 

* An artery brings the blood from the heart ; a vein carries back the 
blood to the heart. 


Cold and Cough — Formica. 

taken, (eight ounces, if a strong dog) the bleeding will 
generally subside ; should this not be the case, a little 
fur from a hat will stop it ; or, the lips of the orifice may 
be drawn together with a needle and thread. 

The vein should be opened longitudinally, as I have 
already observed ; as, if opened in a transverse direction, 
it may be difficult to stop the bleeding, owing to the cir- 
cimfistance of the incision opening every time the dog 
holds down or stretches out his head. 

Caustic or hot iron will stop bleeding, even when an 
artery is divided ; or it may be sewn up. 

Cold and Cough. — A cough arises from an irritation 
of the lungs, and may be produced by a cold or other- 
wise ; it is generally the effect of cold, and may be re- 
moved by 

Antimonial powder, five grains 
calomel, four grains 

made with honey into two bolusses, and given in the 
evening for two nights successively. 

If a hound should be afflicted with a cough, in the first 
place, examine his throat, in order to ascertain if any' 
pieces of bone are lodged there, as such a circumstance 
will cause a dog to cough for weeks. If the cough arises 
from cold, administer a dose* or two of syrup of buck- 
thorn. Should the cough still continue, give tartar 
emetic as described under the head Distemj^er. 

Formica, Scab in the Ears. — A little mercurial oint- 
ment rubbed upon the affected parts every two or three 
days, will very soon effect a cure. 

* A table spoonful is a dose for a common sized hound. 


Canker, Swellings, ."ic. 

Canker i.>. the hips. — Rub the aifected parts with 
alum-water two or three times a day : 

Or, rub with bole ammoniac and burnt alum two or 
three times a day. 

Swellings in general. — See Liflammation, page 78. 

Films in the Eye. — Bathe the affected part twice a 
day with water in which a little vitriol has been dissolved, 
(the size of a large horse bean to a pint of spring water) 
and in a minute or two wash it in clear water. 

Or bathe with the following lotion twice a day : — 

Sulphate of copper, one scruple 
water, four ounces 

Sprains. — Sprains are painful swellings of the liga- 
ments and tendons of the joints, and are caused by too 
great exertion of the limbs, of which the tendons become 
relaxed. They should be well rubbed with the following 
twice a day : — - 

Camphor, two drams 
brandy, one ounce 

when the camphor is well dissolved, add one ounce of 
sweet oil, and shake them well together. Should this 
not have the desired effect, try the following : — 

Spirit of hartshorn, two drams 
sweet oil, six drams 

well shaken, and applied as the other. Give a spoonful 
or two of syrup of buckthorn. 

N. B. As sprains are attended with inflammation,* 
this should be got rid of in the first place by fomenting 

* See also the article " Inflammation," page 78. 



with warm water four or five times a day, and the fol- 
lowing lotion applied : — 

Extiact of lead, two ounces 

water, one pint 

Should any stiffness remain after the inflammation has 
totally subsided, apply a blister. 

IVoimds, and to stop an Effusion of Blood. — The fol- 
lowing will be found very effective in wounds : 

Spirit of sal ammoniac, opodeldoc, sweet nitre, equal parts 

wine, half quantity 

spirit of turpentine, half quantity 

If an artery is wounded, it may be known (as before 
observed) by the blood gushing out (not flowing regu- 
larly) and assuming a florid appearance. If a vein is 
wounded, the blood will be darker coloured and flow 

Wounds may be divided into two classes — incised^ or 
those cut with a sharp instrument ; and contused, or 
those inflicted with any thing blunt or heavy. 

Slight wounds require little or no attention ; but sup- 
posing a serious incised wound, the first operation should 
be cutting, or rather shaving, the hair from around the 
wound, when, if the blood continues to flow, it should 
be stopped by filling the wound with bits of sponge or 
dry lint ; if the wound be in the dog's limbs, a bandage 
tied very tight just above it will materially assist in stop- 
ping the flow of blood, should not the sponge or lint be 
found sufficient. The edges or lips of the wound should 
afterwards be stitched, or drawn close together with ad- 
hesive plaister cut into shps long enough to extend three 
or four inches on each sNJde— the number of slips must of 


Contused Wounds. 

course be regulated by the size of the wound : plenty of 
lint or soft rag should be laid on, over which a roller or 
bandage must be applied to confine the dressing, which 
should not be removed for four or five days. The wound 
should afterwards be dressed with Turners cerate spa- 
ringly spread on rag, and the bandage as before, and 
great caution used not to remove the adhesive plaister 
till the third or fourth dressing. A table spoonful of 
syrup of buckthorn may be occasionally given to keep 
the animal's bowels open : and he must be muzzled or 
otherwise so secured as to prevent his tearing away or 
disturbing the bandage. 

Contused wounds are more painful than incised ; always 
swohi, ragged, and not attended with much hcemorrhage 
or flow of blood : no attempt should be made to bring 
the edges together, but a cold poultice apphed, made 
with oatmeal and the followmg lotion : 

Goulard's extract of lead, one dram 
vinegar, two ounces 
water, one pint 

the poultice should extend over the swelled parts sur- 
rounding the wound, and be renewed three or four times 
during the day. When the wound begins to suppurate 
or discharge, unaccompanied with blood, the cold poul- 
tice should be changed for a warm one, consisting of 
oatmeal and water in which there is a httle grease, and 
renewed three times a day as warm as the dog can bear 
it. In a few days the matter will be completely dis- 
charged, when the wound should be dressed daily with 
yellow basilicon spread on rag, and a long roller applied 
tightly over. 




N. B. Whenever fungus or proud flesh appears, it 
should be touched with blue stone. 

Inflammation.— In^s^mmdiiion arises from various 
causes ; but is distinguished by the part affected be- 
coming swoln, dry, and hot. A shght degree of inflam- 
mation will generally subside without the aid either of 
medicine or external apphcation. Bleeding in the neck 
will frequently remove an inflammation ; or the applica- 
tion of leeches to the aflfected part, having previously 
shaved the hair off. If the swelhng or tumour becomes 
larger, soft, and shining, matter is forming, when warm 
poultices should be applied as described under contused 
wounds, and the same treatment adopted. When the 
matter is completely formed (which may be known by 
the fluctuation of the fluid upon a shght pressure) if the 
skin is very thin, a deep opening or incision should be 
made with a lancet on the prominent part ; but if hard- 
ness is felt the tumour must remain till it breaks itself.— 
After the tumour is emptied, care should be taken that 
the air does not penetrate, or the wound will be much 
more difficult to heal. 

When a hound's eyes become inflamed, and assume a 
red and fiery appearance, bleeding will generally reheve 


Dogs, however, are not very subject to inflammation ; 
and, generally speaking, will be troubled with few dis- 
eases if properly dieted and exercised. Dogs kept in 
towns are much more subject to disorders, than such as 
are kept in the country. Confinement is always injurious 
to health. 


Sore Feet, &c. 

For the bite of another Dog. — See the article Wounds, 
&c. page 76. 

Sore Feet. — Styptic tincture ; or, if this cannot be 
procured, salt and water. 

For extracting Thorns. — Thorns may be generally 
extracted with the thumb and fore-finger nails ; or re- 
course may be had to the assistance of the pen-knife in 
the same way as the sportsman would extract a thorn 
from his own finger. The dog will frequently perform 
the operation with his mouth. If the wound festers, the 
thorn may be squeezed out. 

To bring Hair upon a scalded part. — Fresh hog's lard 
rubbed frequently upon the affected part, will reproduce 
hair ; indeed, I am inclined to think that animal fat in 
general will have the desired effect. Fresh goose grease 
or the fat of fowls, unmixed with salt, will answer the 
purpose equally well. Vegetable oils are of too dry a 
nature, and their effects, as applied to the growth of 
hair, pernicious. Yet there are not wanting quacks who 
daily advertise the sale of oil for the growth of hair on 
the human head ; and by way of the strongest possible 
recommendation, specifically state, that it is extracted 
from vegetables ! This is lamentable ; but it is still more 
so, that such numbers of the unthinking become the 
dupes of these ignorant pretenders, whose existence is a 
stigma on the liberality of the public. 
To destroy Fleas, Lice, ^'-c. 

Take of white arsenic, one dram 
water, one gallon 
soft soap, one quarter of a pound 

boil for ten minutes ; then take it off the fire and let it 


stand to settle, then pour it ofFinto another vessel, leaving 
about half a pint at the bottom, which throw away, and 
dress with the water. — a certain remedy. 

Linseed oil, or Scotch snufF, rubbed well all over the 
body is a temporary remedy. A good washing with 
common soap and water will perhaps answer the purpose. 

In hot weather, hounds are much troubled with fleas ; 
and if the huntsman is anxious for their comfort, he will 
find it necessaiy to use the above several times during 
the summer. Clean beds and cleanliness in general act 
as preventives. 

To recover the Sense of Smell. — When a hound's ol- 
factory organs become affected, it will frequently be 
found to arise from colds, costiveness, or other causes, 
which a dose or two of opening physic seldom fails to re- 
move. A little sulphvu' or syrup of buckthorn will have 
the desired effect. 

For Hounds that have taJcen Poison. — For all vege- 
table poisons, vinegar has been supposed to be a specific. 
At all events, whether vegetable or mineral poison has 
been swallowed, the sooner it is discharged from the 
stomach, the better. 

Take of sulphate of copper, half a drachm 
water, six ounces 

Give two table spoonfuls every five minutes until effect- 
ual vomiting has taken place ; when a strong dose of 
' castor oil should be administered, followed by nourishing 

Whatever will cause instantaneous vomiting may have 
the desired effect. If a hound has swallowed poison? 
and no better remedy happen to be at hand, almost any 


Vegetable Poisons. 

kind of oil (rancid or otherwise) poured down the throat 
is advisable. The poison will most likely be either nox 
vomica, arsenic, or corrosive sublimate ; however, let the 
poison be what it will, the best remedy is the following : 

Ipecacuanha, fifteen grains 
water, two table spoonfuls, mixed 

Should it not operate in fifteen minutes, repeat the 
dose. After the operation 

Take of prepared kali, three drains 
water, one ounce 

give a table spoonful every fifteen minutes, which will 
most likely produce vomiting and purging. Afterwards 
nourishing diet. 

*' Antidote for Vegetable Poisons. — M. Drapiez has 
ascertained, by numerous experiments, that the fruit of 
the fcM'illea cordifoha is a powerful antidote against vege- 
table poisons. He poisoned dogs with rhus toxicoden- 
dron, hemlock, and nox vomica. All those that were 
left to the effects of the poison died, but those to whom 
the fruit of the fewillea cordifolia was administered, re- 
covered completely, after a short illness. M. Drapiez 
also took two arrows which had been dipt in the juice of 
manchinelle, and slightly wounded with them two young 
cats. To the one of these he applied a poultice, com- 
posed of the fruit of the fewillea cordifolia, while the 
other was left without any ^pphcation. The wound of 
the former speedily healed ; while the other, in a short 
time, fell into convulsions, and died." 

It is very difficult however to save the life of a dog 
that has taken poison. Nox vomica is what the base 


The Mange. 

minded generally use for the purpose. If recourse can 
be had to the process before described the moment the 
animal has swallowed the baneful drug, I should have no 
doubt of success ; but if only a few minutes elapse, the 
cure is extremely doubtful. I have witnessed several 
instances, in all of which the animals died, though every 
exertion was used for their preservation. 

Sickness, or a Foul Stomach. — A foul stomach pro- 
ceeds from indigestion ; therefore eight or ten grains of 
tartar emetic may be very beneficially given, followed^ 
in a day or two, by a purge of syrup of buckthorn. 

A dog never perspires ; but whenever he is unwell, his 
eyes very strongly exhibit the change, are a certain index 
of the state of his health, and assume a languid, a dull, 
or a fiery appearance, according to the natvire of the dis- 
order with which he is afflicted. The powers of diges- 
tion in a dog do not appear to be promoted by exercise. 
If you take a dog into the field to hunt with a full stomach, 
he will throw up the contents of it in a few minutes, or 
at least in a short period. If you suffer him to sleep after 
a hearty meal, the digestion is rapid and healthy. 

The Common Mange. — This disorder is very infectious, 
and originally proceeds from dirty beds, bad food, and 
filth in general. It has a loathsome, scabby, dirty ap- 
pearance, somewhat similar to the itch in human beings ; 
and, like that disease, contains animalcula in each of the 
pustules. It may be cured with the following : — 

Oil of tar 

sulphur vivura 

train oil, of each an equal quantity 

with which the dog should be well rubbed several times, 


jrrj jfi^jfif i r i fr » -r . ^r i i -rr » -rrrrr «i ** i T i ' i 'r i 'r-" i I .^^j^a^Aaaii ■»■■ ■■»■■■■» ■»*i 

The Mange. 

a day or two elapsing between each rubbing. Sulphur 
given internally will be of service. 
Another : — 

Flowers of sulphur, half an ounce 
hog's lard or butter, one ounce 

well mixed and rubbed completely over the animal twice 
a day, giving a tea spoonful of the flowers of sulphur 
every evening in a little molasses. Keep the animal 
confined alone, and the moment the cure is effected, give 
him a clean bed. — As the disease is very infectious, 
without great care, all your dogs will become disordered. 

Mercurial ointment rubbed on the parts affected will 
remove this disease ; but it is rather a dangerous re- 
medy, and will kill a weak animal, if not carefully ad- 
ministered : — muzzle the dog. 

An infusion of fox-glove leaves, I have reason to 
believe, will answer the purpose : it is the cleanest re- 
medy ; and though I have not had sufficient experience 
to pronounce its infallibility, I have no hesitation in re- 
commending it : — put a handful of fox-glove leaves into 
a quart or three-pint jug, pour boiling water upon them ; 
and, when cold, rub the dog every day for three or four 
days. The dog need not be muzzled — as soon as dressed 
he will attempt to hck, but will not take a second taste. 

The following I have seen successfully used : — 

Sulphur, two ounces 
mercurial ointment, two drams 
hog's lard, four ounces 

well mixed : with which rub the dog every other day — 
three or four dressings will generally be sufficient. Two 
drams of aloes, mixed up with the above, will not injure 


The Red Mange. 

the composition, [and will probably prevent the animal 
licking himself — otherwise, muzzle him. 

The Red Mange. — The disorder called the red 
MANGE does not appear to be nearly allied to what is so 
well known by the common appellation of mange, but to 
be a species of disease within itself, seated in the skin, 
and not always infectious amongst dogs lying together, 
but almost invariably communicated by a bitch to her 
litter of whelps, particularly if she had it vipon her during 
the time she was in pup. This disorder is most malig- 
nant in its effect ; the incessant and severe itching, which, 
from all observation, seems accompanied by a burning 
heat, and this too increased by the perpetual biting and 
scratching of the tortured animal, give such parts of 
the frame as are severely affected, the appearance of 
having been scalded by some boiling liquor, with a con- 
sequent loss of hair. It is this distinct kind of mange 
that so constantly baffles dog-doctors and dog-mongers 
of every description, and reduces them to their ne plus 
ultra, where the fertility of invention can go no further. 
It is, perhaps, the most deceptive disorder to which any 
part of the animal world can become unluckily subject ; 
for when it has (seemingly and repeatedly) submitted to, 
and been subdued by, some of the combinations of com- 
bustibles before described, it has as suddenly, as repeat- 
edly, and as unexpectedly, made its re-appearance with 
all its former virulence. Great care, nice attention, and 
long experience, have discovered one or two modes of 
perfect eradication. Let half an ounce of corrosive sub- 
limate be reduced in a glass mortar to an impalpable 
powder ; to this, by a very small quantity at a time, add 


The Red Mange. 

two ounces (lialf a gill) of spirits of wine ; and, lastly, 
one pint of rain or river water, and, with a sponge dipt 
in the solution, let every part palpably affected be well 
washed, every third day, till thrice performed ; then 
leave three clear days, and repeat the former ceremony 
of thrice as before ; letting three mercurial purging halls 
be given at the equal distances of three or four days, 
and not the least doubt of cure need be entertained, if 
the mode prescribed is properly and judiciously attended 

Of the red mange General Hanger thus speaks : — 
" My dog had the mange ; not very bad, but something 
much worse with it ; he had eight or ten large blotches 
on his body, as big as large hazel nuts. I sent for an old 
man who made a livelihood by curing dogs : he took a 
bottle out of his pocket, and first dabbed the blotches 
with a bit of tow, each two or three times. He then 
stopped about five minutes, for that to dry in and pene- 
trate ; after which he took a pot of ointment, and rubbed 
the dog in well, for at least ten minutes, under the fore 
legs, and on the belly, but particularly on the hack hone. 
He then desired me not to wash the dog, or let him go 
into the water ; telling me, he would call in about five 
days. When he called, the dog was apparently well ; 
so much so, that he said he did not think it necessary to 
rub the dog again : however, I made him dab the blotches 
again, and rub once more in. — When he called to be 
paid, I told him that, upon my honour, if he would dis- 
cover how the liquid and ointment were made, I would 
give him two guineas, and never discover it till after his 
death. He consented. The liquid is thus made : — Half 


an ounce of quicksilver is put into a bottle, with half an 
ounce of oil of turpentine, for about eight hours before 
using it : shake the bottle frequently, and shake it always 
when you use it, for there will be a sediment at the bot- 
tom. The ointment is thus made : — Take half an ounce 
of quicksilver ; put it into a bottle with half an ounce of 
oil of turpentine ; let it stand for eight hours, shaking 
the bottle frequently ; then take four ounces of hog's 
lard, and by degrees, mix both together, a little of each 
at a time, till the whole be incorporated. — He told me 
that he always carried two pots of ointment with him, 
one stronger than the other, in case of a dog being vei-y 
bad with the mange. The strongest ointment was made 
with ofili/ three ounces of hog's lard, but with the same 
quantity of the quicksilver and turpentine." 
The following is an effectual cure : 

Train oil, one ounce 
black sulphur, one ounce 
liquid blister, half an ounce 

to be rubbed on the dog every other day. 

For the Bite of the Adder, 8^c. — The adder is not un- 
common in some parts of England, and is occasionally 
met with, in the heat of summer, among sedges, and in 
marshy places. It differs from the snake in not being so 
long, the latter being found from three-quarters to a yard 
long ; the former seldom, or never, reaching three- 
quarters of a yard ; there is an appearance of malignity 
in the countenance of the adder, which does not obtain in 
that of the snake, the head of which is not so blunt as that 
of the adder ; while the tail of the latter tapers more 
abruptly, and it is generally found of a more dusky colour. 


and Remedy. 

There is, however, another very essential difference : — 
the snake is destitute of teeth ; while the adder is not only 
prepared in this respect, but has one particular tooth, in 
the side of the jaw, which has a communication with a 
sort of alembic, situated in the reptile's head, and which 
contains the venom : in this tooth, there is a slit ; and 
when the creature becomes irritated and bites, the pi'es- 
sure thus occasioned upon the tooth, causes the venom 
to ooze through the slit, and it is thus injected into the 

I have heard of a reptile, called the slow worm, the 
bite of which is said to be venomous ; but I never saw 
one. The snake is perfectly harmless ; the bite of the 
adder or viper will be attended with serious consequences 
if a remedy is not speedily applied. The remedy, how- 
ever, is simple — the immediate application of sweet oil 
rubbed upon the affected part, counteracts the effects 
of the venom most surprisingly : as I have witnessed it, 
I speak with confidence. Indeed, I am of opinion, that 
any vegetable oil (or animal either, perhaps) will answer 
the purpose ; and have little doubt, that what will cure 
the bite of the adder will cure that of the slow worm also. 
Yet, for a further illustration of this subject, I will bor- 
row the account of a favourite author. I am aware that 
the same account has already appeared in various pub- 
lications ; but, from a conviction that much good may 
result from its becoming generally known, I shall tran- 
scribe it without hesitation : — 

" One William Oliver, a viper catcher, of Bath, was 
the first who discovered this admirable remedy. On the 
first of June, 1735, in the presence of a great number 


of persons, he suffered himself to be bit by an old black 
viper ( brought by one of the company) upon the wrist 
and joint of the thumb, so that drops of blood came out 
of the wound : he immediately felt a violent pain both at 
the top of his thumb and up his arm, even before the 
viper was loosened from his hand : soon after he felt a 
pain, resembling that of burning, trickle up his arm ; in 
a few minutes, his eyes began to look red and fiery, and 
to water much ; in less than an hour, he perceived the 
venom seize his heart, with a pricking pain, which was 
attended with faintness, shortness of breath, and cold 
sweats ; in a few minutes after this, his belly began to 
swell, with great gripings and pains in his back, which 
were attended with vomitings and purgings ; during the 
violence of these symptoms, his sight was gone for several 
minutes, but he could hear all the while. He said, that 
in former experiments he had never deferred making use 
of his remedy longer than he perceived the effects of 
the venom reaching his heart ; but this time, being wil- 
ling to satisfy the company thoroughly, and trusting to 
the speedy effects of his remedy, which was nothing more 
than olive oil, he forbore to apply anything, till he found 
himself exceedingly ill and quite giddy. About an hour 
and a quarter after the first of his being bit, a chaffing 
dish of glowing charcoal was brought in, and his naked 
arm held over it as long as he could bear, while his wife 
rubbed in the oil with her hand, turning his arm continu- 
ally round, as if she would have roasted it over the coals : 
he said the poison soon abated, but the swelling did not 
diminish much. Most violent purgings and vomitings 
soon ensued ; and his pulse became so low, and so often 


and Remedy. — Burns and Scalds. 

interrupted, that it was thought proper to order him a 
repetition of cordial potions : he said he was not sensible 
of any great relief from these ; but that a glass or two 
of olive oil drank down, seemed to give him ease. Con- 
tinuing in this dangerous condition, he was put to bed, 
where his arm was again bathed over a pan of charcoal, 
and rubbed with olive oil heated in a ladle over the 
charcoal, by Dr. Mortimer's direction, who was the phy- 
sician that drew up the account. From this last operation 
he declared, that he found immediate ease, as though 
by some charm ; he soon after fell into a profound sleep, 
and after nine hours' sound rest, awaked, about six the 
next morning, and found himself very well ; but, in the 
afternoon, on drinking some rum and strong beer, so as 
to be almost intoxicated, the swelling returned, with 
much pain and cold sweats, which abated soon, on bathing 
the arm, as before, and wrapping it up in brown paper 
soaked in the oil." 

Burns and Scalds assume a very different appearance, 
according to the degree of heat or violence by which 
they are occasioned ; if slight, and the skin only irri- 
tated, they are easily cured by instantly dashing the part 
affected in cold water, or constantly applying it till the 
pain and irritation have ceased ; if slight blisters rise 
they should not be opened at first, as is generally recom- 
mended ; for if the air penetrates it frequently produces 
an ulcer or sore. When a burn or scald is more severe, 
it must be constantly kept wet with rag dipped in the 
following lotion : — 

Goulard's extract of leail, two drams 
water, half a pint 




and the part kept as quiet as possible. Strong spirits, 

or oil of turpentine, is also serviceable when immediately 

applied ; but the lotion is the most successful treatment 

either in scalds or burns. After the third or fourth day 

the blisters should be opened, but the skin not removed, 

and then dressed with the following ointment : 

Olive oil, half an ounce 

Goulard's extract of lead, one ounce 

well mixed together, and spread on lint or soft rag with 
a bandage over moderately tight. 

Wlien burns or scalds are so severe as to destroy the 
flesh from the bone, warm poultices of oatmeal and water 
should be apphed, and then treated as sujjpuration. — 
See the article Wounds, &c. page 76. 

The Hydrophobia. — This is a dreadful disease, and 
has received a very appropriate name, as human beings, 
but not dogs, when afflicted with this little understood 
malady, uniformly testify an abhorrence of water, and, I 
believe, of fluids in general, and even shining substances. 

" When Sirius reigns, and the sun's parching beams 

Bake the dry gaping surface, visit thou 

Each ev'n and morn, with quick observant eye, 

Thy panting pack. If, in dark sullen mood, 

The glouting hound refuse his wonted meal. 

Retiring to some close, obscure retreat, 

Gloomy, disconsolate ; with speed remove 

The poor infectious wretch, and in strong chains 

Bind him suspected. Thus that dire disease 

Which art can't cure, wise caution may prevent." 


The hydrophobia affords a striking instance of sue- 


Urmskirk Medicine. 

cessful quackery in the avidity with which the Ormskirk 
Medicine was purchased, till within these few years that 
the imposture has been exposed. This compound of 
calcined oyster shells, elecampane, roach alum, and bole 
ammoniac, was originally administered gratis ; but no 
sooner was it discovered that the medicine was eagerly 
sought after, than the sale of it was advertised ; agents 
were appointed in different parts ; and many hundreds 
purchased and took the medicine who had been bitten, 
but not by mad dogs. A dog accustomed to the country, 
is generally alarmed when he approaches a town or vil- 
lage — the shaking of a cobler's apron, or some such 
thing, is frequently resorted to by the lower orders — the 
terrified animal takes to his heels, and will most likely 
snap at any person who attempts to impede his progress. 
Nothing is heard but the cry of mad dog ! and many who 
have been bitten under such circumstances, have called 
in the assistance of the Ormskirk medicine, and have 
thus been willing to suppose a disorder prevented, which 
did not exist in the dog, and which, of course, could not 
be communicated. 

The venders of the Ormskirk medicine, however, 
made the most of the matter — its infallibihty Wiis23njfed 
upon the public in the most barefaced manner ; and it 
was even publicly stated, that such Avas the virtue of the 
medicine, that even after the hydrophobia had made its 
appearance, the disease could be removed by takhig it. 
Cases, with fictitious names, were stated, and the grossest 
falsehoods resorted to, in order to levy contributions 
with more plausibility upon the credulity of the unthink- 
ing. I believe, at present, no person who wishes to 

p o 


Orraskirk Medicine. 

preserve even an appearance of character, will attempt 
to palm the medicine upon the world ; but it has stiU its 
supporters, and a number of old women, in various parts 
of Lancashire, still practice the deception ; and shew 
considerable dexterity in propping its falling reputatioUr 

The recipe was obtained by the late Mr. Hill's father, 
who resided near Oi-mskirk, from an itinerant tinker, in 
the year 1704. The medicine is thus prepared : — take 
one tea spoonful of prepared (calcined) oyster shells, one 
knife point full of roach alum, as much elecampane, in 
powder, and half a tea spoonful of bole ammoniac ; all 
to be powdered finely, and given to the patient in the 
morning fasting, in a little wine and water, or small beer : 
at the same time the wound is to be dressed with a pre- 
paration, varying from that just described, only in a 
greater portion of roach alum. 

Not one dog in twenty, reputed mad, is so in reality — 
the cxire, or rather the prevention, therefore, is certain 
in many instances ; and where it happens otherwise, and 
the dog was labouring under the hydrophobia, the result 
is most melancholy : but then it is immediately and un- 
blushingly asserted, that the medicine had not operated 
in a proper manner — it had not remained upon the 
stomach, or been taken in sufficient quantity ; and thus 
the cheat continues, though on a much more circum- 
scribed scale. 

The fact is, that the only certain remedy hitherto dis- 
covered for this dreadful disease, is the application of 
the knife : — the blood becomes infected by the saliva 
from the dog's teeth ; and unless the bitten part can be 
immediately cut out, death will most likely be the result, 



though the precise time will be very uncertain ; for so 
capricious is this malady, that, after infection, it some- 
times lies dormant, as it were, in the system for months, 
sometimes for weeks ; while instances, I believe, are not 
wanting, where it has appeared, in all its terrible symp- 
toms^ in the course of a few days. 

It is possible that a person might be bitten by a mad 
dog, and yet escape the hydrophobia : if, in the act of 
biting, the animal's teeth pass through a thick woollen 
coat, or other garment, so that his teeth in passing 
through are wiped dry, he might inflict a wound without 
any of the infectious saliva or fluid reaching it. 

Respecting the bite of a mad dog, Dr. Vandeburgh 
very judiciously observes : — " not a moment should be 
lost to destroy the poison from the wound (even if only 
on supposition of the animal being mad) ; many reme- 
dies are recommended, but should not be trusted to ; 
the only effectual method is to destroy the foundation of 
the poison, and give the following course of medicine : — 
the part bitten must be entirely cut out with a sharp in- 
strument, and the edges of the wound seared with a red- 
hot iron, to prevent the smallest particle of poison re- 
maining ; afterwards, warm poultices of oatmeal and 
water to be applied as warm as the patient can possibly 
bear, to produce a quick and copious discharge of matter 
or suppuration. The following pills should be given :— 

Calomel, one scruple 
opium, half a scruple 

well mixed and divided into ten pills of equal size, one 
pill to be taken every four hours ; two drams of strong 
ointment of quicksilver to be wellrubl)ed in on the thighs 


Symptoms of 

and arms morning and evening, M'hich, with the medicine, 
must be continued till the mouth becomes sore and spit- 
ting is produced : when matter discharges from the 
sore, it should also be dressed with strong ointment of 
quicksilver thickly spread on lint and the poidtice con- 
tinued over it : this treatment must be pursued for the 
space of one month, then the wound healed with Tirr- 
ners cerate spread on lint, but the mouth kept sore and 
slight spitting prolonged for at least two months, as 
hydrophobia has been known to make its appearance 
five and six months after the bite of the animal : sea 
bathing is strongly advised, but I would always recom- 
mend the foregoing treatment in preference, a trial of 
which should not be omitted, if the poison was destroyed 
at first by cutting, neither if the bite has happened some 
time, nor even when the following symptoms have taken 
place : the part bitten becoming tender and inflamed, 
uneasiness and stupidity, frightful dreams, convulsions, 
eyes red and watery, pain all over the body, difficulty in 
swallowing, great thirst, and when liquid is only brought 
before the patient he appears choked, accompanied with 
trembling and shivering over the whole body ; vomiting 
bile frequently occurs, attended with great thirst and 
fever : the last symptoms are raging and foaming at the 
mouth, spitting at the bystanders, and strong convul- 
sions, as if drawn double ; — no patient should be given 
over till the last moment : the mercurial friction should 
be tried, and the prescribed medicine given while he 
exists, as there is hope of recovery by perseverance in 
the foregoing method. 

The patient should be kept on very low diet, and no 
spirits or wine be used." 


the Hydrophobia. 

The following are the progressive symptoms of hy- 
drophobia : when a dog becomes melancholy, droops 
his head, forbears eating, seems to forget his former 
habits, and as he runs snatches at every thing : if he 
often looks upwards, and that his tail at its setting on 
be rather erect, and the rest of it hanging down ; if his 
eyes be red, his breath strong, his voice hoarse, and that 
he drivels and foams at the mouth, you may be satisfied 
of the approaches of hydrophobia ; and the only thing 
that should be done is instantly to despatch him, how- 
ever great a favourite he may be. If at this period he 
should remain at liberty, he will certainly leave his home : 
he goes as fast as he can ; and the mischief that may 
happen, owing thus to a mad dog breaking away, and 
running over an extent of country, is incalculable, as he 
spares no living creature. 

The following accurate description, from the pen of 
Mr. Youatt, appeared in the Sporting Magazine, Sep- 
tember, 1825 : — ■ 

*' The symptoms of rabies in the dog are the following, 
and nearly in the order in which they usually appear : — 
An earnest licking, or scratching or rubbing of some 
particular part ; sullenness, and a disposition to hide 
from observation ; considerable costiveness and occa- 
sional vomiting ; an eager search for indigestible sub- 
stances — as bits of thread, hair, straw, and dung ; an 
occasional inclination to eat its own dung, and a general 
propensity to lap its own urine. The two last are per- 
fectly characteristic circumstances. The dog becomes 
irritable ; quarrels with his companions ; eagerly hunts 
and worries the cat ; mumbles tlie hand or foot of his 


Symptoms of 

master, or perhaps suddenly bites it, and then crouches 
and asks pardon. As the disease proceeds, the eyes 
become red ; they have a pecuhar bright and fierce ex- 
pression ; some degree of strabismus or squinting very 
early appears ; not the protrusion of the membrana nic- 
titans, or haw, over the eye, which, in distemper, often 
gives the appearance of squinting, but an actual distor- 
tion of the eyes ; the lid of one eye is evidently more 
contracted than the other : twitchings occur round that 
eye ; they gradually spread over that cheek, and finally 
over the whole face. In the latter stages of the disease 
that eye frequently assumes a dull green colour, and at 
length becomes a mass of ulceration. 

*' After the second day the dog usually begins to lose 
a perfect control over the voluntary muscles. He 
catches at his food with an eager snap, as if uncertain 
whether he could seize it ; and he often fails in the 
attempt. He either bolts his meat almost unchewed, or 
in the attempt to chew it, suffers it to drop from his 
mouth. This want of power over the muscles of the 
jaw, tongue, and throat, increases, until the lower jaw 
becomes dependent, the tongue protrudes from the 
mouth, and is of a dark and almost black colour. The 
animal is able, however, by a sudden convulsive effort to 
close his jaws, and to inflict a severe bite. 

*' The dog is in incessant action : he scrapes his bed 
together, disposes it under him in various forms, shifts 
his posture every instant — starts up, and eagerly gazes 
at some real or imaginary object: a peculiar kind of de- 
lirium comes on : he traces the fancied path of ^me 
imaginary object floating around him : he fixes his gaze 


the Hydrophobia. 

intently on some spot in the wall or partition, and sud- 
denly plunges and snaps at it ; his eyes then close, and 
his head droops ; but the next moment he starts again 
to renewed activity : he is in an instant recalled from this 
delirium by the voice of his master, and listens attentively 
to his commands ; but as soon as his master ceases to 
address him, he relapses into his former mental wandering. 

"His thirst is excessive (there is no hydrophobia in 
the dog) and the power over the muscles concerned in 
deglutition being impaired, he plunges his face into the 
water, up to the very eyes, and assiduously, but ineffect- 
ually, attempts to lap.* 

** His desire to do mischief depends much on his pre- 
vious disposition and habits. I have known it not to 
proceed beyond an occasional snap, and then only when 
purposely irritated ; but with the fighting dog the scene 
is often terrific. He springs to the end of his chain — 
he darts with ferocity at some object he conceives to be 
within his reach — he dihgently tears to pieces every thing 
about him ; the carpet or rug is sliaken with savage vio- 
lence ; the door or partition is gnawed asunder ; and so 
eager is he in this work of demolition, and so regardless 
of bodily pain, that he not unfrequently breaks one or 
all of his tushes. If he effects his escape he wanders 
about, sometimes merely attacking those dogs which fall 

* In those instauces of hydrophobia which have fallen under my notice, 
1 have never observed the dog •' plunge his face into the water up to the 
very eyes, and assiduously, but ineffectually, attempt to lap.'" On the 
contrary, the animal has always been capable of lapping : however, in the 
disease called Dumb Madness, I have noticed symptoms similar to the 


Symptoms of 

in his way, and at other times he diligently and perse- 
veringly hunts out his prey : he overcomes every obstacle 
to effect his purpose ; and, unless he has been detected 
in his march of death, he returns in about four and 
twenty hours, completely exhausted to the habitation of 
his master. 

" He frequently utters a short and peculiar howl, 
which if once heard, can rarely be forgotten ; or if he 
barks, it is a short, hoarse, inward sound, altogether 
dissimilar from his usual tone. 

"In the latter stages of the disease a viscid saliva 
flows from his mouth, with which the surface of the water 
that may. be placed before him is covered in a few min- 
utes, and his breathing is attended with a harsh grating 
sovmd, as if impeded by the accumulation of phlegm in 
the respiratory passages. 

" The loss of power over the voluntary muscles extends 
after the third day through his whole frame, and is par- 
ticularly evident in the loins : he staggers in his gait 5 
there is an uncertainty in all his n.otions ; and he fre- 
quently falls, not only when he attempts to walk, but 
when he stands balancing himself as well as he can. On 
the fourth or fifth day of the disease he dies, sometimes 
in convulsions, but, more frequently, without a struggle. 

" After death there will invariably be found more or 
less inflammation of the mucous coat of the stomach ; 
sometimes confined to the rugse, at other times in patches ; 
generally with spots of extravasated blood, and occasion- 
ally intense, and occupying the whole of that viscus. 
The stomach will likewise contain some portion of indi- 
gestible matter, (hair, straw, dung), and occasionally it 


the Hydiophobia. 

will be completely filled and distended by an incongruous 
mass. The lungs will usually present appearances of 
inflammation, more intense in one, and generally the left 
lung, than in the other. Some particular points and 
patches will be of a deep colour, while the neighbouring- 
portions are unaftected. The sublinqual and parotid 
glands will be invariably enlarged ; and there will also 
be a certain portion of inflammation, sometimes intense, 
and at other times assuming only a faint blush, on the 
edge of the epiglottis, or on the rima glottidis, or in the 
angle of the larynx at the back of it." 

When the human species become unhappily the sub- 
jects of this calamity, though in particular instances 
some variation may be observed, yet the first symptoms 
are generally the same ; these are a torpid disquietude 
in the wound (or seat of injury), attended with slight in- 
tervening itchings, ultimately amounting to pain, and 
much resembling rheumatic affection. It continues to 
extend itself to the surrounding parts ; and, at length, 
from the extremities it expands its poisonous power to 
the viscera ; the cicatrice, if there has been a wound, 
begins to swell, inflammation hourly increases, till, at 
length, a serous bloody iclior is discharged, and this 
alone may be considered the primary and invariable prog- 
nostic of certain hydrophobia. These leading symptoms 
soon become progressively general, bearing with them 
every appearance of confirmed rheumatism ; they are fluc- 
tuating, quick, acute, and of the spasmodic, convulsive 
kind ; they suddenly attack the patient, severely affect- 
ing the head, neck, and principal joints ; a dull, drowsy 
pain often seizes the head, neck, breast, abdomen, and 


Symptoms of 

even vibrates along the back bone. The patient is 
gloomy and inchned to soUtude, murmurs much, seems 
lost in reflection, is forgetful, inattentive, and prone to 
sleep ; at times agitating starts denote the mind to be 
disordered ; by turns he is attentively watchful ; his 
slumbers become disturbed, and suddenly awaking from 
those, convulsive appearances soon follow. 

A deafness is sometimes complained of, the eyes are 
watery ; the aspect sorrowful ; the countenance pale, and 
the face contracted ; sweat breaks out about the temples ; 
an unusual flow of saliva, slimy and viscid, at length 
comes on with a dryness of the fauces, a fovilness of the 
tongue, and a disagreeable smell (or rather fetid effluvia) 
from the breath. As the symptoms already recited in- 
crease, the second stage advances : a fever commences, 
which at first is mild, but makes with gigantic strides the 
most rapid advances to extremity ; it is accompanied 
with hourly increasing horrors, and all the alarming con- 
comitants of mental derangement. Wakefulness becomes 
perpetual ; violent periodical agitations ensue ; the mind 
is evidently more and more disturbed ; a delirium follows, 
at which critical moment an invincible aversion to fluid, 
glass, or any polished or shining body is plainly per- 
ceived. A constriction of the gullet takes place, and an 
incredible difficulty of swallowing ensues ; liquids are 
offered, and are attempted to be taken, but the disgust 
and loathing become so predominant, that they are most 
violently declined : and this symptomatic dread and 
aversion so wonderfully increases, that, upon the very 
appearance of any watery fluid, the greatest horror conies 
on, and the most shocking muscular distortions ensue: 


the Hydrophobia. 

if the liquor is attempted to be forcibly pressed upon 
them, the experiment is rejected by an instantaneous 
succession of the most horrid gesticulations, and convul- 
sive distortions, in which every ray of reason seems to be 
absorbed. Upon a temporary cessation of so serious 
and distressing a paroxysm, the poor unhappy patient 
now murmurs, groans, and mourns most miserably ; loses, 
by degrees, all knowledge of his dearest friends and 
most familiar acquaintance : and their presenting them- 
selves before him, is the very critical moment when all 
of this description give proof of their desire to bite, 
which, in the attempt, bears no ill affinity to the similar 
snappings of a village cur. 

Awful to relate, reason returns at intervals, and he 
feelingly laments his own calamity, and deplores his own 
incapacity. A consciousness of appi'oaching dissolu- 
tion is perceptible even to himself, and he seems truly 
resigned to the singularity of his fate. Severe pain and 
consequent heat producing thirst, a desire to drink is 
displayed, but nature shrinks from her office ; in vain 
the patient raises his hand to touch the vessel, it almost 
magically produces instant tremor — the hand recedes, 
and the patient sinks into the most afflicting despon- 
dency. Conscious, likewise, of his constantly increasing 
inclination to bite, he, in his rational moments, makes 
signals to warn his friends of the danger, and keep them- 
selves at a distance. Towards the conclusion of this 
dreadful and most melancholy scene, the fever and 
parching thirst increase, the tongue becomes swelled and 
protruded, foam issues from the mouth, strength fails, 
cold sweats come on, the stricture upon the breast in- 


Treatment of 

creases, as well as the other predommant symptoms, 
until, in a long succession of convulsive struggles, all- 
powerful death closes the scene. 

The cause of the hydrophobia is utterly unknown ; and 
its effects hitherto appear to have bafHed every remedy 
which has been tried for its removal. Copious and re- 
peated venesection was, a few years ago, announced to 
the world as a cure for the hydrophobia, and instances 
were given in order to confirm it : it is true, they came 
in a questionable shape on account of the distance which 
they had to travel, being chiefly from the East Indies : 
however, the method just mentioned, has been tried in 
this country and found unavailing. 

The alis7na plantago was introduced as a remedy ; 
but, on repeated trial, has proved ineffectual. 

Another remedy has been introduced. This new 
remedy comes from a distance ; but let us not reject it 
merely on that score. The account has appeared in 
several medical works, and was first published, it seems, 
by Dr. Mailer, of Vienna, a scientific physician, now 
resident at Paris. The German physician says, he re- 
ceived the particulars from M. Marochetti, a Russian 
surgeon, who informed him, that, during his residence 
in the Ukraine, in the year 1813, he was called on to at- 
tend fifteen persons who had been bit by a mad dog, 
when some old men requested him to treat the unfortu- 
nate people according to the directions of a neighbouring 
peasant, who had acquired a great reputation for curing 
the hydrophobia. M. Marochetti allowed the peasant 
to dXi&w^ fourteen , reserving one to himself, a female of 
sixteen, who was cauterized and treated in the usual way. 


the Hydrophobia. 

and expired eight days after the attack. The peasant 
gave to the fourteen persons placed under his care a 
strong decoction of the tops of the flowers of the yellow 
broom (a pound and a half a day). He examined twice 
a day the under part of the tongue, where he had gener- 
ally discovered little pimples, containing, as beheved, the 
hydrophobic poison : these pimples really followed, and 
were observed by Marochetti himself. As they formed, 
the peasant opened them, and cauterized the parts with 
a red hot needle ; after which, the patients gargled with 
the decoction mentioned above. The result of this treat- 
ment was, that the fourteen patients were cured, having 
only drank the decoction for six weeks. Marochetti 
then states, that, five years afterwards, he himself had 
an opportuninity of giving this treatment another trial. 
Twenty-six persons who had been bit by a mad dog, 
were put under his care, viz. nine men, eleven women, 
and six children : he ordered the decoction of the tops 
of the flowers of yellow broom to be given them as soon 
as possible ; and upon an attentive exammation of their 
tongues, he discovered pimples on five men, three chil- 
dren, and all the women. Those who were most wounded 
Mere afflicted on the third day ; the others on the fifth, 
seventh, or ninth. One of the women who had been 
slightly bitten on the leg had no appearance till the 
twenty-first day. The seven who wei*e free from pimples 
took the decoction of broom for six weeks, with success. 
M. Marochetti thinks that the hydrophobic poison, after 
having remained in the wound, fixes itself under the 
tongue, in the orifices of the ducts of the submaxillary 
gland, which are situated on the sides of the fraenum. 


Dumb Madness. 

The inflammation, of which the httle pimples are the 
result, has a peculiar appearance. The time in which 
these pimples appear, is generally between the third and 
ninth day after the bite. If they are not opened before 
twenty-four hours after their appearance, the venom is 
absorbed and the patient is lost. 

I shall be extremely anxious to hear of the success of 
this mode of treatment nearer home ; for I must confess 
I cannot place implicit confidence in the narrative. 

Upon the disease, erroneously denominated Dumb 
Madness, I will relate what fell under my own observa- 
tion, and from which a tolerable idea of the disorder may 
be formed : — In the month of May, 1823, a pointer 
whelp was presented to me by a friend, which I knew 
to be as well bred as any in the kingdom, and on that 
account, I, of course, prized him more highly. The dog 
was whelped on the 16th of April, of the same year ; 
and as soon as I received him, a kennel was appropriated 
for his use in the open air, well littered with wheat straw, 
and kept clean. He had full liberty, and a clear stream 
of water close at hand, to quench his thirst whenever he 
thought proper. The dog, as might be expected, was 
remarkably healthy ; and, at seven months old, had be- 
come an amazingly fine animal : at this period, he expe- 
rienced a slight attack of the distemper, which immedi- 
ately gave way to bleeding and a dose of tartar emetic ; 
and in three or four days he was restored to perfect 
health. His colour was a perfect jet black ; he was: 
larger than common, and altogether, the finest young 
pointer I ever saw. On the 8th of January, (of the 
following year,) I observed the dog keep his mouth 


Dumb Madness. 

almost continually open, the inside of which appeared 
darker coloured than usual, and somewhat swelled. I 
immediately bled him copiously, which, however, pro- 
duced no visible alteration ; on the contrary, the next 
day all the symptoms had evidently increased, and I 
observed that he was unable to swallow, though he made 
many attempts both to eat and drink, particularly the 
latter : but the water, or the milk, which, by putting his 
nose into the vessel, he contrived to get into his movith, 
uniformly run out again, and he appeared utterly unable 
to pass it down his throat : he licked his fore-legs very 
much, and seemed to have a trifling discharge of mucus, 
or saliva : but all this time the dog appeared not only 
perfectly sensible, but even in good spirits, and evidently 
experienced but little pain. A sporting acquaintance, 
who saw him, said the disease was what was distin- 
guished by the appellation of dumb madness, which seems 
to me altogether a ridiculous term ; and supposing this 
tx> have been the disorder with which my dog was af- 
fected, I can testify that the term is very improperly 
applied, as the animal in question regularly barked on 
the approach of a stranger, though in a different tone, 
and with more difficulty than usual. However, I imme- 
diately searched authorities for dumb madness, with a 
view to ascertain the proper mode of treatment. In an 
old writer, (the author of the " Gentleman's Recreation,") 
I found it thus described: — "The dog that is troubled 
with dumb madness will not feed, bvit holds his mouth 
tvide open continually, putting his feet to his mouth fre- 
quently, as if he had a bone in his throat." Now, though 
my dog kept his jaws somewhat distended, his mouth 



Dumb Madness. 

was not wide open, but only partially so, and that he was 
able to shut it I can safely attest, as I saw him many 
times close his jaws, though he never kept them more 
than a second or two in that position ; further, the animal 
frequently licked his fore-legs, but I never saw him raise 
his feet, or otherwise use indications similar to those 
adopted by a dog when he seems to have a bone in his 
throat ; and therefore the cases did not appear to agree. 

I had next recourse to the " Sportsman's Dictionary, 
or Gentleman's Companion ;" the third edition of which 
was published in 1783, which contained the following 
observations; — "Dumb madness lies in the blood, and 
causes the dog not to feed, but to hold his mouth always 
wide open, frequently putting his feet to his mouth, as if 
he had a bone in his throat." 

To be brief — I perused every thing within my reach, 
on the subject of dogs and their diseases, but without 
gaining the least information ; and, as the disorder, at 
least in the form in which it presented itself, was new to 
me, I began to entertain fears for the life of my dog, and 
the sequel will prove they were but too well founded. I 
have already remarked, that I first perceived the disease 
on the 8th of January, and the dog continued much in 
the same way for four successive days, during which, all 
his faculties appeared very little, if at all, impaired. He 
would follow me into the field, and even hunt, frequently 
attempting to drink, and, in order to accomplish that 
desirable object, would thrust his nose into the water, 
instead of attempting to lap ; but he never succeeded in 
forcing any of the fluid down his throat : his sense of 
smell was as perfect as ever; and, indeed, though he 


Dumb Madness. 

evidently became very lean, he might be said to be in 
good spirits till the morning of the 13th, when I found 
him very languid, his eye had lost its lustre, and death 
was evidently fast approaching. He was perfectly sen- 
sible, and whenever I approached and spoke to him, he 
raised his heavy eyes, and by these, as well as by the 
movement of his tail, appeared grateful for my attention. 
Towards the evening he made a last effort to swallow 
food, but was not able. On the following morning he 
was stretched on his side, and had every appearance of 
death, only that a breathing, at very long intervals, 
proved that the vital spark was not absolutely extinct. 
Some few hours afterwards he was perfectly lifeless ; 
and I was resolved, if possible, to ascertain the cause of 
his death. For this purpose I called in the assistance of 
a skilful veterinary surgeon, and the animal was partly 
dissected in my presence. On opening the body, it was 
abundantly evident that the dog had been starved to 
death ; or, in other words, had died for want of food. 
The lungs, the liver, and, indeed, all those parts of the 
animal organization were totally unaffected, and mani- 
fested not the slightest symptom of disease ; the same 
remark will equally apply to all parts of the throat, and 
also to the brain ; and the only affection that could be 
discovered, was in the salivary glands, which were tri- 
flingly swelled. On the whole, I feel a perfect con- 
viction, that the disorder of the dog was a glandular 
affection, which, by rendering him incapable of swallow- 
ing sustenance, caused his death. 

Of the cure, should a similar case come under my 
observation, I feel confident ; and I have been thus 


Dumb Madness. 

minute for the information of spoi'tsmen in general, par- 
ticularly as I have been informed, that the disorder which 
I have attempted to describe, or something very much 
resembling it, has carried off, within the last few years, 
great numbers of valuable dogs, especially in Yorkshire. 
Should a similar case occur with any of my dogs, I 
should force food, (nourishing broth, for instance), down 
the throat, with an instrument adapted for the purpose ; 
and if I found it impossible to get it down, I would inject 
it into the bowels, when a sufficient quantity would be 
taken up by the absorbents, to sustain life till the dis- 
ease of the glands abated. In the first place, I should 
feel a disposition to bleed the afflicted animal, as this 
would prevent any superabundant pressure of blood upon 
the parts affected, which I might perhaps rub well with 
mercurial ointment. 

It is a lamentable fact, that so little attention has been 
paid to the diseases of this invaluable animal, though no 
creature which has yet been taken under human pro- 
tection affords so good an opportunity for observation, 
or is so much entitled to the assistance and kind offices 
of its master. The dog vhas become a domestic of the 
most familiar description, whose greatest delight is in 
administering to the pleasures of the sportsman, or those 
by whom his services are called into action ; his civiliza- 
tion may be said to proceed in the precise ratio with that 
of human nature, and he uniformly takes his tone from 
the circumstance or the situation of his master. As he 
has closely associated himself with man, therefore, he 
has brought upon himself a train of diseases, resulting 
from his artificial mode of life ; and from which, in a 


Dumb Madness. 

State of nature, there is little doubt, but he is altogether 
exempt. In fact, living under the same roof, and in the 
same manner, as his master, he seems to be afflicted 
something in the same way ; and, upon close examina- 
tion, it will be found, that many of his disorders bear a 
strong resemblance to those in man, and would, I have 
little doubt, give way to a somewhat similar treatment. 
Thus circumstanced, it seems unaccountable that the 
medical treatment of this faithful creature should have 
been so neglected. Generally speaking, whenever a dog 
is attacked with any disease, little trouble is taken in his 
recovery ; food is offered him, and if he is able to eat it 
and recovers, it is all right ; but it very frequently 
happens, tliat the moment he exhibits symptoms of uidis- 
position, he is suspected of hydrophobia, and, without 
any attempts to alleviate his pains, he is placed in a situa- 
tion of security, and either suffered to pine away, or is 
prematurely despatched. This may not apply altogether 
to sportsmen, perhaps ; though many of these, I have 
not the least doubt, pay but httle attention to the matter. 
In kennels of hounds, and other large dog establish- 
ments, there is a certain method followed ; or, in other 
words, there is a list of disorders which is supposed to be 
understood by the huntsman, or the game-keeper, and, 
in like manner, a regular list of antiquated applications 
or medicines is placed, as it were, opposite the disorders : 
now, if the medicines were positively applicable to the 
diseases, is it likely that the latter are so understood, that 
one is not frecjuently mistaken for another? Or, can it 
be supposed, that the persons in question are sufficiently 
skilled in the science of healing, so as to discern those 



Dumb Madness. 

turns or alterations by which the same disease assumes a 
different form, and, accordingly, requires different treat- 
ment? This is too much to expect. Huntsmen and 
gamekeepers, also, are generally much attached to their 
dogs, and seldom fail to show them considerable atten- 
tion, when they are diseased ; and though I may have 
met with some who possessed acute perception and sound 
sense, yet, in order to acquire a thorough knowledge of 
the subject on which I have been speaking, a superior 
education seems indispensable, as well as much more 
extensive practice than could possibly be afforded by 
any one dog establishment in the kingdom : if extensive 
practice be necessary to the physician and the surgeon, 
why not to the dog-doctor also ? In any science or pro- 
fession where success must depend very much upon the 
practitioner's powers of perception, some degree of edu- 
cation is not only indispensable, but superior abihties or 
considerable genius also. It is not likely, that the requi- 
site opportunities and qualifications will be found united 
in many instances ; and, under such circumstances, I 
would strongly advise sportsmen to pay as much atten- 
tion to their diseased dogs as possible ; and whatever 
reliance they may place upon their servants, it can do no 
harm to watch the progress of the disorder themselves. 
Many sportsmen of the old school, in their treatment 
of the diseases of dogs, seem to have resorted to super- 
stitious notions, and to have disregarded true philosophy 
altogether ; so much so, indeed, that it is amusing to 
read many of their ideas on the subject. It is possible, 
however, that dog-diseases might formerly have existed, 
which are unknown at the present day ; but a disease 


called the Yellows, that has sometimes appeared in ken- 
nels of hounds, I never saw described in any publication, 
either ancient or modern ; nor is it generally known even 
among sportsmen, though, wherever it has appeared, its 
effects have been very violent, and frequently attended 
with fatal consequences. 

The Yellows. — This would appear to be a disease 
peculiar to the kennel, which makes its appearance in all 
ages of the hound. In the first approaches of the yellows, 
the animal loses his appetite, and of course appears dull. 
On turning up his eye-lids, a yellow appearance presents 
itself; the inside of his flanks exhibit a similar hue or 
colour. Hence it would seem that the disorder is some- 
thing of a bilious nature ; or, at least, it assumes a com- 
plexion which would seem to warrant such a conjecture. 
At all events, if it be not immediately checked, it will 
end with the death of the dog. This disease, which is 
not of an ancient date, made considerable havock in 
many kennels, till at length, the following treatment was 
found efficacious : — As soon as the dog is perceived to 
be ill, four grains of calomel should be administered to 
him, and he should be kept warm during their operation. 
Then take 

Rhubarb, one ouHce 
aloes, half an ounce 
Castile soap, half an ounce 
(Ethiop's mineral, half an ounce 

These should be mixed up with syrup of buckthorn, 
and made into bolusses about the size of a nutmeg : one 
of which should be given every morning for three suc- 
cessive days, when one may be administered every other 


Lameness in the Shoulder. 

morning, for a week or longer, if necessary. For this 
method of treating the yellows, I am indebted to W. 
Head, Sir Harry Mainwaring's huntsman ; which, he 
informed me, he had found successful almost invariably. 
Lameness in the Shoulder may also be regarded as a 
disease of the kennel. This, as I have observed at page 
30, seems to be produced by damp kennels ; and may be 
prevented by the administration of warmth, though it 
cannot always be cured when it has taken place ; yet I 
am inclined to think that warmth is the best remedy, as 
well as an absolute preventive. 


Of the Naming of Hounds. — A List of Names. — Of the 
Feeder. — Of Boiling and Mixing the Meat, and the 
proper Food for Hounds. — The Method and Time 
of Feeding. — Of Bleedhig and Physicking Hounds. 
— Of Entering Young Hounds. — Summer Hunting, 
SfC. — Of Flogging Hounds. — Bedford's System. 

Young hounds (says Beckford) are commonly named 
when they are first put out to their walks, and sometimes 
indeed ridiculously enough ; nor is it easy, where many 
are bred, to find suitable and harmonious names for the 



Naming of Hounds. 

whole ; particularly as it is the cusitom to name all the 
whelps of a litter with the same initial letter as the sire 
or the dam. However, one exception at least exists to 
thus naming young hounds when put out to walks : — 
At Sandiway Head Inn, (kept by J. Whittle) near Dela- 
mere Forest, a whelp is kept for Sir Harry Mainwaring, 
which must uniformly receive the name of Bluecap. 
The house, as I have already noticed, is known by the 
name of Sandiway Head Inn ; it is also further distin- 
guished by the sign of the celebrated hound, Bluecap, 
whose performance at Newmarket has been stated in the 
earlier part of this volume, and whose memory is par- 
ticularly cherished here, from the circumstance of his 
having formed one of the Cheshire pack, then under the 
direction of Mr. Barry. In consequence of this parti- 
ality on the part of honest James Whittle, the hound 
kept by him has of course to undergo a second baptism 
on being taken into the kennel. 

A list of names for hoimds seems at first view a waste 
of time ; yet to render the work as complete as possible, 
it seems necessary. 


A. dogs. 













B. dogs 






















A. bitches. 










Names of Hounds. 
















C. dogs. 
















E. dogs. 




D. dogs. 













































E. bitches. 

B. bitches. 






C. bitches. 






























D. bitches. 





F. degs. 










































Names of Hounds. 




























I. dogs. 








Gal Hard 







L. bitches 







H. dogs. 






















F, bitches. 

















I. bitches. 


































L. dogs. 









M. dogs. 


G. bitches. 















H. bitches. 





• Hasty 






























Kames of Hounds. 





















N. dogs. 



















Merry boy 



























R. dogs. 







N. bitches. 










































R. bitches. 




















M. bitches. 





P. dogs. 















P. bitches. 






























Names of Hounds. 



































S. dogs. 











































V, do^s. 







T. dogs. 














































Twig' em 





















S. bitches. 



















' ongster 
















Of the Feeder 

V. bitches. 



























W. bitches. 



























W. dogs. 











Beckford says, and says truly, that a good feeder is 
an essential part of the kennel establishment ; and he 
further observes, " let him be young and active ; and 
have the reputation, at least, of not disliking work : he 
should be good tempered, for the sake of the animals 
entrusted to his care ; and who, however they may be 
treated by him, cannot complain." These are highly 
commendable qualifications for the office of feeder ; but 
we do not find them always exactly attended to ; for 
instance, we do not find feeders always "young;" on the 
contrary, the task occasionally, perhaps frequently, de- 
volves upon men somewhat advanced in life, and who 
are thus enabled to earn a livelihood, when it would be 
difficult to obtain it in any other way. However, whether 
the feeder be young or old, he should cheerfully and 
punctually attend to the directions of the huntsman ; and 
if the latter understands his business, the age of the 
feeder will be, in all probability, of little consequence, so 


and Feeding. 

long as he is able to perform the requisite labour. Feed- 
ing the hounds is an indispensable part of the business 
of the kennel ; and if this be regarded as the primary 
object, cleanhness must be considered as the next in im- 

" O'er all let cleanliness preside, no scraps 
Bestrew the pavement, and no half pick'd bones 
To kindle fierce debate, or to disgust 
That nicer sense, on which the sportsman's hope. 
And all his future triumphs, must depend. 
Soon as the growling pack, with eager joy, 
Have lapp'd their smoking viands, morn and eve. 
From the full cistern lead the ductile streams. 
To wash thy court well pav'd, nor spare thy pains, 
For much to health will cleanliness avail. 
Seek'st thou for hounds to climb the rocky steep, 
And brush th'entangled covert, whose nice scent 
O'er greasy fallows, and frequented roads. 
Can pick the dubious way, banish far off 
Each noisome stench, let no offensive smell 
Invade thy wide enclosure, but admit 
The nitrous air, and purifying breeze." 


Boiling for the hounds, mixing the meat, and getting 
it ready for them at proper hours, is the business of the 
feeder, of course under the superintendance of the 
huntsman ; and care should be taken not to let the 
hounds have their meat too hot ; the thicker it is mixed, 
perhaps, the better. 

Oat-meal is generally used, and certainly makes the 
best meat for hounds ; and oat-meal is best for the pur- 
pose when it is two years old; barley has been tried, 
but it does not mix up so well ; the proof, or essential 



principle of it, is also much inferior ; even when mixed* 
with oat-meal it is not advisable food ; and it is, on the 
whole, more expensive than oat-meal, tho' the first cost 
may appear not so great. However, I have reason to 
believe that the quality of the oat-meal is not always 
sufficiently regarded ; and even the best of oat-meal is 
very much improved by keeping for two years, as I have 
already observed. I have known instances, where what 
is called Bread Dust has been substituted for oat-meal ; 
but it has not been found equal to the latter : — by Bread 
Dust is meant the refuse of ship bread or biscuit, which 
may be purchased in the large sea-port towns in almost 
any quantity. Where horse flesh happens to be scarce, 
cow heels, bellies, and sheep's trotters will make an ex- 
cellent substitute. 

In many kennels, they do not boil for the hounds in 
summer, I believe ; but give them meal only : — I sliould 
certainly prefer boiling : though the meat at this period 
might be mixed up thinner, and be thus more conducive 
to the health of the hounds. Indeed, in the hunting 
season, when many of the hounds, after long rest, become 
too fat, feeding them on thinner meat than the rest is 
more advisable than stinting them in the quantity of it. 

* On this subject, Beckford observes — " I have enquired of my feeder, 
who is a very good one, how he mixes up his meat. He tells me that, in 
his opinion, oat-meal and barley mixt, an equal quantity of each, make 
the best meat for hounds. The oat-meal he boils for half an hour, and 
then puts out the fire, puts the barley into the copper, and mixes both well 
together. I asked him why he boiled one and not the other ? — he told 
me, boiling, which made the oat-meal thick, made barley thin ; and that 
when you feed with barley only, it should not be put into the copper, but 
be scalded with the liquor and mixed up in a bucket." 


The Duty of a Huntsmm. 

It is the duty of the huntsman always to attend the feed- 
ing of the hounds ; which shoukl be drafted according to 
their condition ; that is, making due allowance for other 
collateral circumstances — some hounds, like some horses, 
will feed better than others — some will look better than 
others — and some will be able to endure more fatigue 
than others : these are matters with which a huntsman, 
if he possess discernment, will soon become acquainted, 
and will of course act accordingly: — this, however, is 
what distinguishes a good kennel huntsman. Beckford 
says, such as are low in flesh had better be drafted off 
into a separate kennel ; by this means the hounds that 
require ^e*/i will have an equal share of it. If any are 
much poorer than the rest, they should be fed again — 
such hounds cannot be fed too often. He continues, '' I 
have been told that in one kennel* in particular, the 
hounds are under such excellent management, that they 
are constantly fed with the door of the feeding yard open ; 
and the rough nature of the fox-hound is changed into 
so much politeness, that he waits at the door till he is in- 
vited in ; and what perhaps is not less extraordmary, he 
comes out again, whether he has satisfied his hunger or 
not, the moment he is desired — the effect of severe di;-- 
cipline. But since this is not absolutely necessary, and 
hounds may be good without it ; and since I well know 
your other amusements (he is writing to a friend) will 
not permit you to attend to all this manoeuvring, I would 
by no means wish you to give such power to your hunts- 

• Alluding no doubt to the Quorndon, when undor the direction of 
the late Hugo Meynell, Esq. 



man. The business would be injudiciously done, and 
most probably would not answer your expectations. The 
hound would be tormented mal-a-propos ; — an animal so 
little deserving of it from our hands, that I should be 
sorry to disturb his hours of repose by unnecessary seve- 
rity. You will perceive it is a nice affair ; and I assure 
you I know no huntsman who is equal to it. The gen- 
tleman, who has carried this matter to its utmost perfec- 
tion, has attended to it regularly himself; has constantly 
acted on fixed principles ; from which he has never 
deviated, and I believe has succeeded to the very utmost 
of his wishes." 

In Beckford's time, the method above described was 
in its infancy, and he speaks inconsiderately upon it ; 
he derides a practise of the most essential utihty, (par- 
ticularly in making hounds well acquainted with their 
names) which in fact may be said to constitute the per- 
fection of kennel discipline ; and which, in the field, has 
the most beneficial influence, inasmuch as it renders the 
hounds more obedient. The advantages of such a system 
are evident at the first glance, and the practise has 
become general throughout the kingdom : — hence the 
drafting off lean hounds into a separate kennel may be 
easily avoided, as well as several other rather antiquated 
methods which the above able writer has taken the 
trouble to describe. 

" My hounds are generally fed (says Beckford) about 
eleven o'clock ; and if I am present myself, I take the 
same opportunity to make my draft for the next day's 
hunting. I seldom, when I can help it, leave this to my 
huntsman ; though it is necessary he should be present 
when the draft is made, that he may know what hounds 



he has out. If your hounds are low in flesh, and have 
far to go to cover, they may all have a little thin lap 
again in the evening ; but this should never be done if 
you hunt early. Hounds, I think, should be sharp-set 
before hunting ; they run the better for it. 

*' I have heard that it is the custom in some kennels 
to shut up the hounds for a couple of hours after they 
come in from hunting, before they are fed ; and that 
other hounds are shut up with them to lick them clean." 
This is certainly "a custom more honoured in the breach 
than the observance." It savours strongly of the old 
school ; and has long been, I have reason to believe, 
utterly abandoned. Surely, when hounds have under- 
gone the fatigues of a day's hunting, having commenced 
their operations too, fasting, nothing can be more reason- 
able, or more consistent with the laws of nature, than 
that they should fill their bellies immediately on their 
return ; when they will not fail to retire comfortably to 
rest. In the month of November or December, 1825, 1 
visited the York and Ainsty fox-hounds. When in the 
kennel, and talking with the huntsman (William Naylor) 
he observed, that, on his return from hunting, he gene- 
rally disturbed his hounds, half an hour perhaps after 
having fed them, and walked them out, before he allowed 
them to retire to rest for the night :^his motive for this 
practise was in order to prevent lameness in the shoulder 
(a disorder which has already been noticed) ; which he 
thought arose from the hounds being suffered to repose 
immediately after hard labour, from which stiffness en- 
sued, and ulthnately lameness in the shoulder. There 
may be something original in the idea ; but it is a mis- 

11 2 



taken notion : lameness in the shoulder unquestionably 
arises from damp kennels. Some of his hounds, when 
his kennel was newly erected, had been thus afflicted ; 
and although it must have proceeded from the cause 
already mentioned, yet I am not prepared to deny that 
Naylor's method of walking out the hounds would not 
render the effect of damp kennels less violent, and con- 
sequently less injurious. 

When hounds come in from hunting, they should be 
carefully looked over, or examined ; and those that have 
sustained any injury should be immediately attended to. 
Beckford says, that " if you will permit those hounds 
that are unable to work to run about your house, it will 
be of great service to them. Of this there can be no 
doubt, as hounds which are suffered to go at large, are 
not nearly so liable to disease, as those kept in kennels — 
it may in fact be justly observed, that liberty is highly 
conducive to health. But it is not always convenient for 
hounds to run about a house. 

" Every Thursday during the hunting season (says 
Beckford) my hounds have one pound of sulphur given 
them in their meat ; and every Sunday throughout the 
year they have plenty of greens boiled up with it." I am 
seldom inclined to give physick to dogs in good health ; 
yet, although I may entertain no very exalted notion of 
Beckford's weekly administration of sulphur, I am per*- 
fectly convinced that greens may be occasionally (per- 
haps frequently) given to hounds with the most bene- 
ficial effect. 

The same writer further observes — " I am not fond of 
bleeding hounds, unless I see they want it." Yet, I am 


inclined to think that hounds will derive benefit from 
bleeding much oftener than Beckford seems to suppose. 
A dog is relieved by bleeding in many of the diseases to 
which he is liable, and in none more than the distemper. 
In the first place, it should be considered that the dog's 
skin is not porous, that he never perspires ; and that 
consequently oppressed nature is not relieved in him by 
that general and copious evacuation, which is frequently 
found so salutary in man, as well as in many animals : in 
many of the casual illnesses of the dog (to say nothing 
of his well known diseases) there seems to be a determi- 
nation of blood towards the head ; or, at least, the animal 
will appear dull and heavy about the eyes — in all cases 
of this description, bleeding invariably relieves him. 

" It has long been the custom in my kennel (continues 
the same writer) to physick the hounds twice a year — 
after they leave off hunting and before they begin. It 
is given in hot weather, and at an idle time. It cools 
their bodies, and without doubt is of service to them. 
If a hound is in want of physick, I prefer giving it in balls." 
I have already observed, that when a hound is in good 
health, I should be seldom disposed to physick him ; and 
I cannot help thinking that periodical physicking is quite 
unnecessary. If a hovmd be perfectly well, what more 
can be required ; and under such circumstances, gene- 
rally speaking, to administer physick seems utterly un- 
called for, if not altogether ridiculous. I differ from 
Beckford also in his mode of administering medicine to 
hounds : I prefer mixing it in their meat, to giving it 
" in balls." His physick, he observes, was composed of 
'* two pounds of sulphur, one pound of antimony, and a 



Management of 

pint and a half of syrup of buckthorn, for about forty 
couple of hounds." I am induced to suppose syrup of 
buckthorn alone will answer the purpose as well, if not 
better, given in the proportion of a large table spoonful for 
each hound. I have always thought, and still continue 
to think, that the mode and manner of physicking hounds 
partakes too much of parade and mystery, and that these 
animals are sometimes (perhaps often) physicked, when 
there is not the slightest occasion for such a process. 
Of exercise, during summer, I would give them as much 
as possible. 

" A regular course of whey and vegetables during the 
hot months must certainly be wholesome (says Beckford, 
in which I perfectly agree.) Every Monday and Thurs- 
day my hounds go for whey till the hunting season begins ; 
are kept out several hovu-s, and are often made to swim 
through rivers during the hot weather." 

In writing to his friend, the same author observes, 
" You little think, perhaps, how difficult it is to be a 
good kennel huntsman, nor can you as yet know the 
nicety that is required in feeding hounds properly. You 
are not aware that some hounds will hunt best when fed 
late ; others, when fed early : — that some should have 
but little ; that others cannot have too much. I shall 
only advise you, while you endeavour to keep your 
hounds in good order, not to let them get too fat." 

As soon as young hounds are reconciled to the kennel, 
they should be put into couples and walked out with 
their attendants on foot — if amongst sheep, so much the 
better ; and indeed amongst deer also. If any of them 
happen to be very stubborn and troublesome, it will be 


Young Hounds. 

advisable to couple them to old hounds rather than to 
young ones. If the young hounds are particularly awk- 
ward, they should be sent out by a few at a time. They 
will thus soon become tractable and handy enough to 
follow a horse. 

When they have often been walked out in the manner 
just described, and have become obedient, a few should 
be uncoupled at a tune, and such as oft'er to run sheep 
or any kind of riot, should be chastised. The less, 
however, the whip is used the better ; and if they stop 
at the word, the whip should not be applied. If they 
have tasted mutton, it will be much more difficult to 
reclaun them — indeed they are to be viewed with sus- 
picion ever after : not that there is much danger to be 
.apprehended when hounds have been taken into the ken- 
nel, and have undergone a regular course of disciplme, 
as they are afterwards under proper care, and have few 
opportunities of committing depredations, however well 
they may be inclined for it. But accidents sometimes 
occur. " My hounds (says Beckford) were near being 
spoiled by the accident of a horse's falling. The whip- 
per-in was thrown from his horse. The horse ran away, 
and the whole pack followed him. A flock of sheep, 
which were at a little distance, took fright, began to run, 
and the hounds pursued them. The most vicious set on 
the rest, and several sheep were soon pulled down and 
killed. " I have sometimes observed even old hounds to 
cast a sort of a longing eye when passing a small lamb. 
Wlien hounds are taken out for air or exercise, it is 
perhaps advisable to couple the young ones, as they are 
prone to mischief. To air and exercise young hounds 


Of Entering 

in the covintry they are meant to begin to hunt, is an ad- 
vantage: they acquire a knowledge of it; and if they 
happen to be left behind, they will thus be enabled to 
find their way home more easily. 

" Summer hunting, though useful to young hounds, is 
prejudicial to old ones : I think therefore (observes the 
writer whom I have had frequent occasion to quote) you 
will do well to reserve some of the best of your draft 
hounds to enter your young ones with, selecting such as 
are most likely to set them a good example. I need not 
tell you they should not be skirters ; but, on the contrary, 
should be fair hunting hounds, such as love a scent, and 
that hunt closest on the line of it : — it will be necessary 
that some of them should be good finders, and all must 
be steady. Thus you procure for your young hounds the 
best instructions, and at the same time prevent two evils, 
which would necessarily ensue, were they taught by the 
whole pack ; one, that of corrupting and getting into 
scrapes, such as are not much wiser than themselves; 
and the other, that of occasioning much flogging and 
rating, which always shies and interrupts the hunting of 
an old hound. An old hound is a sagacious animal, and 
is not fond of trusting himself in the way of an enraged 
whipper-in, who, as experience has taught him, can flog, 
and can flog unjustly. By attending to this advice, you 
will improve one part of your pack, without any injury 
to the other ; whilst such as never separate their young 
hounds from the old, are not likely to have any of them 

The time of entering young hounds must depend upon 
circumstances. The sooner they are entered the better 


Young Hounds. 

certainly ; but, in corn countries this business cannot be 
conveniently commenced till the corn is cut; grass 
countries are better adapted for the purpose (and indeed 
for hunting altogether) ; and in woodlands cub hunting 
may begin almost at any period. 

I am no advocate for stooping young hounds to any 
scent but the one which they are intended to hunt ; 
perfectly convinced that they will thus, not only give less 
trouble, but are more to be depended on afterwards. 

" If, owing to scarcity of foxes, you should stoop your 
hounds at hare, let them not have the blood of her at 
least ; nor, for the sake of consistency, give them much 
encouragement. Hare hunting has one advantage — 
hounds are chiefly in open ground, where you can easily 
command them ; but, notwithstanding that, if foxes arc 
in tolerable plenty, keep them to their own game." 

Trail scents are objectionable; as well as the method 
piu'sued by sportsmen of the old school, such as di'ag- 
ging a cat along the ground for a mile or two, turning 
out a badger, &c. If a few foxes can be aftbrded for 
the purpose, they are highly preferable to any thing else. 
Young hounds should be first taken where there is least 
riot, putting some of the steadiest old hounds amongst 
them. If, in such a place, there fortunately happens to 
be a litter of foxes, there will be but little trouble with 
young hounds afterwards. Cub hunting should be com- 
menced as early as possible in the morning ; as soon, in 
fact, as objects can be clearly distinguished. 

Frequent hallooing is of use to young hounds ; it keeps 
them forward, prevents their being lost, and hinders 
them from hunting after the rest. The oftener therefore 


Ot Chastising 

a fox is seen and hallooed the better ; it serves to let 
them in, makes them eager, induces them to exert them- 
selves, as well as to become handy. The case, however, 
is very different with old hounds, to whom much halloo- 
ing is highly prejudicial — a fault, by the bye, into which 
ignorant huntsmen generally fall. At the same tune it 
may be justly observed that there is a time when hallooing 
is of use ; a time when it is injurious ; and a time when 
it is indifferent : practice and attention can alone teach 
the correct application. 

Young hounds, at their first entering, require encour- 
agement. As soon as they have become handy, love a 
scent, and begin to know what is right, it will be soon 
enough to chastise them for doing ivrong : in which case, 
let it be recollected, one severe flogging will save much 
trouble afterwards. Whenever a hound is undergoing 
castigation, the voice should accompany the stroke ; and 
the whipper-in (whose duty it is to flog) should recollect 
that the sound or smack of the whip will frequently an- 
swer the purpose better than the lash, to a hound that 
has already felt it. If any are very unsteady, it may be 
advisable to take them out by themselves : a hare may 
be found sitting, and be put off before them ; and thus 
the most riotous may be reduced to obedience. Young 
hounds should be frequently taken out amongst deer, 
(as I have already observed) and they will sooner learn 
to disregard them. When a cur dog is met with on the 
road or other place, it may not be amiss for the hunts- 
maxi to gallop after it, as it were, should not the hounds 
attempt to run it Avithout that manoeuvre, and they will, 
by these means, be thoroughly taught what to pursue, 


and what to disregard altogether. Turning a cub out 
before them, with some old steady hounds to lead them, 
is an excellent method of rendering them steady to their 
own game. 

As soon as young hounds are become handy, stoop to 
the scent, know a rate, and stop easily, they may be put 
into the pack, a few at a time. The horn may be re- 
garded as an indispensable appendage to a pack of fox- 
hounds ; or at least, if not indispensable, it is very useful. 

" Flogging hounds in kennel, the frequent px'actice of 
most huntsmen, I hold in abhorrence ; it is unreasonable, 
unjust, and cruel ; and, carried to the excess we some- 
times see it, is a disgrace to humanity. Hounds that 
are old offenders, that are very riotous, and at the same 
time very cunning, may be difficvdt to catch — such 
hounds may be excepted: — they deserve punishment 
whenever it happens, and you should not fail to give it 
them when you can. This, you will allow, is a particular 
case, and necessity may excuse it ; but let not the peace 
and quiet of your kennel be often thus disturbed. When 
hounds offend, punish them : when caught in the fact, 
then let them suffer ; and, if you are severe, at least be 
just." Whatever might have been the practice of hunts- 
men in the days of the writer (Beckford) from which 1 
have quoted the above, I have reason to believe that 
flogging hounds in the kennel for faults committed in the 
field has been long since abandoned, except perhaps 
where the whipper-in was not able to reach or secure the 
culprit ; but, even in this case, the offending hound 
should be pursued immediately, and the chastisement in- 
flicted while the animal is conscious of the crime ; since. 


Of Chastising Hounds. 

if he be allowed to continue out, and the punishment 
delayed till the regular period of returning home, he 
becomes ignorant for what it is inflicted ; and the correc- 
tion, which, under other circumstances would have been 
necessary and wholesome, is thus converted into cruelty, 
and the purpose intended to be answered by its applica- 
tion rendered completely abortive. When, however, 
hounds are unruly or disobedient in the kennel, they 
should of course be punished there ; and, in all cases, the 
more quickly the chastisement follows the commission of 
the crime, the better. But, in no case would I apply 
the lash, where the smack of the whip, accompanied by 
angry words, would answer the purpose. At the same 
time, I am well aware, that flogging, and severe flogging 
too, is frequently indispensable to the requisite discipline 
and well-being of a pack of fox-hounds ; and the higher 
these animals are bred, the more will they require the 
application of the lash : this arises from the inferiority of 
their olfactory organs, which disqualifies them from per- 
ceiving the difference of scents with that discriminating 
nicety which distinguishes the deep-flewed hound, and 
they in consequence become more unsteady. 

The management of hounds should be considered as 
a regular system of education ; and "if you expect sa- 
gacity in your hoimd when he is old, you must be mind- 
ful what instruction he receives from you in his youth ; 
for, as he is of all animals, the most docile, he is also 
most liable to bad habits. A diversity of character, con- 
stitution, and disposition is to be observed amongst 
them ; which, to be made the most of, must be carefully 
attended to, and treated differentlv," 


Time of Entering Young Hounds. 

Beckford having detailed his own system consecutively, 
I here insert it, stating in notes where I happen to differ 
from him in opinion. 

" I begin to hunt my young hounds in August. The 
employment of my huntsman the preceding months, is 
to keep his old hounds healthy and quiet, by giving them 
proper exercise, and to get his young hounds forward. 
They are called over often in the kennel ; it uses them 
to their names,* to the huntsman, and to the whipper-in. 
They are walked out often among sheep, hares, and deer ; 
it uses them to a rate. Sometimes he turns down a catf 
before them, which they hunt up to and kill ; and, when 
the time of hunting approaches, he turns out badgersf 
or young foxes, taking out some of the steadiest of his 
old hounds to lead them on — this teaches them to hunt. 
He draws small covers and furze brakes with them, to 
use them to a halloo, and to teach them obedience. If 
they find improper game, and hunt it, they are stopped 
and brought back ; and as long as they will stop at a 
rate, they are not chastised. Obedience is all that is 
required of them, till they have been sufficiently taught 
the game they are to hunt. An obstinate deviation from 
it afterwards is never pardoned. 

* This is an excellent plan ; upon which modern sportsmen have, liow- 
tver, greatly improved ; since it has been carried to such perfection, that 
the dogs separate from the bitches at a word, and vice versa. In some es- 
tablishments, a pack is formed entirely of bitches; by which means no' 
only these, but the other packs, become more sizeable, and have a more 
pleasing appearance. Mr. OsbalJeston's bitch pack in 1825-6 presented 
the most beautiful appearance I ever beheld. 

f I have already expressed my disapproval of the above practises. 


Of the Hunting of 

" When my young hounds are taken out to air, my 
huntsman takes them into the country in which they are 
to begin to hunt. It is attended with this advantage : 
they acquire a knowledge of the country, and when left 
behind at any time, cannot fail to find their way home 
more easily. 

"When they begin to hunt, they are first taken into 
a large cover of my own, which has many ridings cut in 
it ; and where young foxes are turned out every year for 
them. Here it is they are taught the scent they are to 
hunt, are encouraged to pursue it, and are stopped from 
every other. Here they are blooded to fox. I must 
also tell you, that as foxes are plentiful in this cover, the 
principal earth is not stopped, and the foxes are checked 
back, or some of them let in, as may best suit the purpose 
of blooding. After they have been hunted a few days 
in this manner, they are then sent to distant covers, 
and more old hounds are added to them ; there they 
continue hunting till they are taken into the pack, which 
is seldom later than the beginning of September ; for by 
that time they will have learned what is required of them, 
and they seldom give much trouble afterwards. In Sep- 
tember, I begin to hunt in earnest, and after the old 
hounds have killed a few foxes, the young hounds are 
put into the pack, two or three couple at a time, till all 
have hunted. They are then divided ; and as I seldom 
have occasion to take in more than nine or ten couple, 
one half are taken out one day, the other half the next, 
till all are steady. 

" Two other methods of entering young hounds I have 
practised occasionally, as the number of hounds has 


Young Hounds. 

required ; for instance, when that number is very con- 
siderable, I make a large draft of my steadiest hounds, 
Avhich are kept with the young hounds in a separate 
kennel, and are hunted with them all the fore part of 
the season. This, when the old hounds begin to hunt, 
makes two distinct packs, and is always attended with 
great trouble and inconvenience. Nothing hurts a pack 
so much as to enter many young hounds, since it must 
weaken it considerably by robbing it of those which are 
the most steady ; and yet young hounds can do nothing 
without their assistance. Such, therefore, as constantly 
enter their young hounds in this manner, will, sometimes 
at least, have two indifterent packs, instead of one good 

*' In the other method, the young hounds are well 
awed from sheep, but never stooped to a scent, till they 
are taken out with the pack ; they are then taken out 
a few only at a time ; and if your pack is perfectly steady, 
and well manned, may not give you much trouble. The 
method I first mentioned, which is the one I most com- 
monly practise, will be necessary when you have many 
young hounds to enter ; when you have only a few, the 
last will be most convenient. The other, which requires 
two distinct packs, is on too extensive a plan to suit your 
establishment, requiring more horses and hounds than 
you intend to keep. 

"Though I have mentioned, in a former letter, from 
eight to twelve couple of young hounds, as a sufficient 
number to keep up your pack to its present establish- 
ment, yet it is always best to keep a few couple more 
than you want, in reserve, in case of accidents : since, 


Of Blooding Young Hounds. 

from the time you make your draft, to the time of hunt- 
ing, is a long period ; and their existence at that age and 
season very precarious : besides, when they are safe 
from the distemper, they are not always safe from each 
other; and a summer, I think, seldom passes without 
some losses of that kind. At the same time I must tell 
you, that I should decline the entering of more than are 
necessary to keep up the pack, since a greater number 
would only create useless trouble and vexation. 

" You wish to know what number of old hounds you 
should hunt with the young ones : — that must depend on 
the strength of your pack, and the number which you 
choose to spare ; if good and steady, ten or twelve couple 
will be sufficient. 

" The young hounds, and such old ones as are in- 
tended to hunt along with them, should be kept in a 
kennel by themselves, till the young hounds are hunted 
with the pack. I need not, I am sure, enumerate the 
many reasons that make this regulation necessary. 

*■ I never trust my young hounds in the forest till they 
have been well blooded to fox, and seldom put more than 
a couple into the pack at a time. The others are walked 
out amongst the deer, when the men exercise their 
horses, and are severely chastised if they take any notice 
of them. They also draw covers with them ; choosing 
out such, where they can best see their hounds, and 
most easily command them, and where there is the least 
chance to find a fox. On these occasions I had rather 
they should have to rate their hounds than to encourage 
them. It requires less judgment ; and, if improperly 
done, is less dangerous in its consequences. One halloo 


Entering Young Fox-hounds. 

of encouragement to a wrong scent, more than undoes 
all that you have been doing. 

" When young hounds begin to love a scent, it may be 
of use to turn out a badger* before them ; you will then 
be able to discover what improvement they have made ; 
I mention a badger, on a supposition that young foxes 
cannot so well be spared ; besides, the badger, being a 
slower animal, he may easily be followed, and driven the 
way you choose he should run. 

*' The day you intend to turn out a fox, or badger, 
you will do well to send them amongst hares or deer. 
A little rating and flogging, before they are encouraged 
to vermin, is of the greatest use, as it teaches them both 
what they should, and what they should not, do ; I have 
known a badger run several miles, if judiciously managed ; 
for which purpose he should be turned out in a very 
open country, and followed by a person who has more 
sense than to ride on the line of him. If he does not 
meet with any cover or hedge in his way, he will keep 
on for several miles ; if he does, you will not be able to 
get him any farther. — You should give him a great deal 
of law, and you will do well to break his teeth. 

" If you run any cubs to ground in an indifferent 
country, and do not want blood, bring them home, and 
they will be of use to your young hounds. Turn out 
bag foxes to your young hounds, but never to your old 

"The day after your hounds have had blood, is also 
a proper tune to send them where there is riot, and to 

* See note, page 133. 


Various Methods of 

chastise them if they deserve it : it is always best to cor- 
rect them when they cannot help knowing what they are 
corrected for. When you send out your hounds for 
this purpose, the later they go out, I think, the better ; 
as the worse the scent is, the less incUnable will they be 
to run it, and of course will give less trouble in stopping 
them. It is a common practice with huntsmen to flog 
their hounds most unmercifully in the kennel : I have al- 
ready told you I like it not ; but if many of your hounds 
are obstinately riotous, you may with less impropriety 
put a live hare into the kennel to them, flogging them 
as often as they approach her ; they will then have some 
notion at least, for what they are beaten : but, let me 
entreat you, before this chaviari begins, to draft off your 
steady hounds : an animal to whom we owe so much 
good diversion, should not be ill used unnecessarily. — 
When a hare is put into the kennel, the huntsman and 
both the whippers-in should be present, and the whip- 
pers-in should flog every hound, calling him by his name, 
and rating him as often as he is near the hare, and upon 
this occasion they cannot cut them too hard, or rate them 
too much ; when they think they have chastised them 
enough, the hare should be taken away, the huntsman 
should halloo off his hounds, and the whippers-in should 
rate them to him. — If any one loves a hare more than 
the rest, you may tie a dead one round his neck, flogging 
him and rating him at the same time. 

" I would advise you to hunt your large covers with 
your young hounds ; it will tire them out ; a necessary 
step towards making them steady; and will open the 
cover against the time you begin to hunt in earnest, and 
by disturbing the large covers early in the year, foxes 


Entering Young Fox-hounds. 

will be shy of them in the season, and shew you better 
chases : besides, as they are not likely to break from 
thence, you can do no hurt to the corn, and may begin 
before it is cut. 

" If your hounds are very riotous, and you are obliged 
to stop them very often from hare, it will be advisable, I 
think, to try on (however late it may be) till you find a 
fox, as the giving them encouragement should, at such 
a time, prevail over every other consideration. 

" Such as are very riotous should have little rest ; you 
should hunt them one day in large covers, where foxes 
are in plenty ; the next day they should be walked out 
amongst hares and deer, and stopped from riot ; the day 
following be hunted again as before. Old hounds, that 
I have had from other packs (particularly such as have 
been entered at hare) I have sometimes found incorrigible ; 
but I never yet knew a young hound so riotous, but, by 
this management, he soon became steady. 

"When hounds are rated and do not answer the rate, 
they should be coupled up immediately, and be made to 
know the whipper-in : in all probability this method will 
save any farther trouble. These fellows sometimes flog 
hounds most unmercifully, and some of them seem to 
take pleasure in their cruelty. 

"I have heard, that no fox-hounds will break off to deer, 
after once a fox is found. — I cannot say the experience 
I have liad of this diversion will any ways justify the re- 
mark ; let me advise you therefore to seek a surer de- 
pendance. Before you hunt your young hounds where 
hares are in plenty, let them be awed, and stopped from 
hare : before you hunt amongst deer, let them not only 



Importance of First Impressions. 

see deer, but let them draw covers where deer are : for 
you must not be surprised, if, after they are so far steady, 
as not to run them in view, they should challenge on the 
scent of them. Unless you take this method with your 
young hounds, before you put them into the pack, you 
will run a great risk of corrupting such as are steady, 
and will lose the pleasure of hunting with steady hounds. 
I have already said, that after my young hounds are taken 
into the pack, I still take out but very few at a time, 
when I hunt among deer. I also change them when I 
take out others ; for the steadiness they may have ac- 
quired could be but little depended on, were they to 
meet with any encouragement to be riotous. 

" I confess I think first impressions of more conse- 
quence than they are in general thought to be : I not 
only enter my young hounds to vermin on that account, 
but I even use them, as early as I can, to the strongest 
covers and thickest brakes, and I seldom find they are 
ever shy of them afterwards. A friend of mine has as- 
sured me, that he once entered a spaniel to snipes, and 
the dog ever after was partial to them, preferring them 
to every other bird. 

^'Ifyouhavemarterns* within your reach, as all hounds 

* Beckford seems, in some degree, to contradict himself; in the pre- 
ceding paragraph, the instance of the spaniel and snipes seems at variance 
with the advice which immediately follows for entering young hounds at 
the martern. In his sixth letter he also observes ; — "You had better enter 
them at their own game — it will save you much trouble afterwards. Many 
(logs, I believe, like that scent best they were first blooded to; but be that 
as it may, it is certainly most reasonable to use them to that which it is in- 
tended they should hunt.'' — He also severely reprobates the practice of en- 
tering young hounds at hare, as will be seen by the following pages. 


Summer Hunting. 

are fond of their scent, you will do well to enter your 
young hounds in covers which they frequent. The mar- 
tern being a small animal, by running the thickest brakes 
it can find, teaches hounds to run cover, and is therefore 
of the greatest use. — I do not much approve of hunting 
them with the old hounds ; they shew but little sport, 
are continually climbing trees ; and as the cover they 
run seldom fails to scratch and teai- hounds considerably, 
I think you might be sorry to see your whole pack dis- 
figured by it. The agility of this little animal is really 
wonderful ; and though it falls frequently from a tree, in 
the midst of a whole pack of hounds, all intent on catch- 
ing it, there are but few instances, I believe, of a mar- 
tern's being caught by them in that situation. 

**In summer, hounds might hunt in an evening ; — I 
know a pack, that, after having killed one fox in the 
morning with the young hounds, killed another in the 
evening with the old ones. Scent generally lies well at 
the close of the day, yet there is a great objection to 
luniting at that time ; animals are then more easily dis- 
turbed, and you have a greater variety of scents than at 
an earlier hour. 

"Having given you all the information I can possibly 
recollect with regard to my own management of young- 
hounds, I shall now take notice of that part of your last 
letter, where I am soi'ry to find that our opinions diftbr. 
Obedience, you say, is every thing necessary in a hound, 
and that it is of little consequence by what means it is 
obtained. I cannot concur altogether in that opinion ; 
for I think it very necessary, that the hound should at 
the same time understand you. Obedience, under i)roper 

1 3 


Obedience indispensable 

management, will be a necessary consequence of it. 
Obedience, surely, is not all that is required of them : 
they should be taught to distinguish of themselves right 
from wrong, or I know not how they are to be managed ; 
when, as it frequently happens, we cannot see what they 
are at, and must take their words for it. A hound that 
hears a voice which has often rated him, and that hears 
the whip he has often ^elt, I know, will stop. — I also 
know, he will commit the same fault again, if he has been 
accustomed to be guilty of it. 

" Obedience, you very rightly observe, is a necessary 
quality in a hound, for he is useless without it. It is 
therefore an excellent principle for a huntsman to set 
out upon ; yet, good as it is, I think it may be carried too 
far. I would not have him insist on too much, or tor- 
ment his hounds, mal-a-propos, by exacting of them by 
force what is not absolutely necessary to your diversion. 
You say, he intends to enter your hounds at hare — is it 
to teach them obedience? — Does he mean to encourage 
vice in them, to correct it afterwards ? — I have heard, 
indeed, that the way to make hounds steady from hare, 
is to enter them at hare : that is, to encourage them to 
hunt her. It requires more faith than I pretend to, to 
believe so strange a paradox. 

"It concerns me to be obliged to differ from you in 
opinion ; but since it cannot now be helped, we will pur- 
sue the subject, and examine it throughout ; permit me 
then to ask you, what it is you propose from the entering 
of your hounds at hare ? Two advantages, I shall pre- 
sume, you expect from it ; — The teaching of your hounds 
to hunt, and teaching them to be obedient. — However 


in Fox-hounds. 

necessary you may think these requisites in a hound, I 
cannot but flatter myself they are to be acquired by less 
exceptionable means. The method I have already men- 
tioned to make hounds obedient, as it is practised in my 
own kennel — that of calling them over often in the ken- 
nel, to use them to their names, and walking them out 
often amongst sheep, hares, and deer, from which they 
are stopped to use them to a rate, in my opinion, would 
answer your purpose better. The teaching your hounds 
to hunt is by no means so necessary as you seem to ima- 
gine. Nature will teach it them, nor need you give 
yourself so much concern about it. Art only will be ne- 
cessary to prevent them hunting what they ought not to 
hunt — and do you really think your method a proper one 
to accomplish it ? 

" The first and most essential thing towards making 
hounds obedient, I suppose, is to make them understand 
you ; nor do I apprehend you will find any difficulty on 
their parts, but such as may be occasioned on yours. — 
The language we use to them, to convey our meaning 
should never vary : — still less, should we alter the very 
meaning of the terms we use. — Would it not be absurd 
to encourage, when we mean to rate? and if we did, 
could we expect to be obeyed ? — You will not deny this, 
and yet you are guilty of no less an inconsistency, when 
you encourage your hounds to run a scent to-day, which 
you know, at the same time, you must be obliged to 
break them from to-morrow : — is it not running counter 
to justice and reason ? 

" I confess there is some use in hunting young hounds, 
where you can easily command them ; but even this you 


Impropriety of Entering 

may pay too clearly for. Enter your hounds in small 
covers, or in such large ones as have ridings cut in them ; 
whippers-in can then get at them, can always see what 
they are at, and I have no doubt that you may have a 
pack of fox-hounds steady to fox by this means, without 
adopting so preposterous a method as that of first making 
hare-hunters of them. You will find, that hounds, thus 
instructed what game they are to hunt, and what they 
are not, will stop at a word ; because they will under- 
stand you ; and after they have been treated in this 
manner, a smack only of the whip, will spare you the 
inhumanity of cutting your hounds in pieces (not very 
justly) for faults which you yourself have encouraged 
them to commit. 

" I think, in your last letter, you seem very anxious to 
get your young hounds well blooded to fox, at the same 
time that you talk of entering them at hare. How am I 
to reconcile such contradictions ? If the blood of fox is 
of so much use, surely you cannot think the blood of a 
hare a matter of indifference, unless you should be of 
opinion that a fox is better eating. — Nature, I suppose, 
never intended they should hunt sheep, yet we very well 
know, when once they have killed sheep, that they have 
no dislike to mutton afterwards. 

"You have conceived an idea, perhaps, that a fox- 
hound is designed by nature to hunt a fox. Yet, surely, 
if that vi^as your opinion, you would never think of enter- 
ing him at any other game. I cannot, however, think 
nature designed the dog, which we call a fox-hound, to 
hunt fox only, since we know he will also hunt other 
animals. That a well-bred fox-hound may give a pre- 


Young Fox-hounds at Hare. 

ference to vermin, caeteris paribus, I will not dispute ; I 
think it very possible he may ; but this I am certain of — 
that every fox-hound will leave a bad scent of fox, for a 
good one of either hare or deer, unless he has been made 
steady from them ; and in this, I shall not fear to be con- 
tradicted. But, as I do not wish to enter abstruse rea- 
soning with you, or think it any ways material to our 
present purpose, whether the dogs we call fox-hounds 
w^ere originally designed by nature to hunt fox or not, 
Ave will drop the subject. I must at the same time beg 
leave to observe, that dogs are not the only animals in 
which an extraordinary diversity of species has happen- 
ed since the days of Adam. Yet a great naturalist tells 
us, that man is nearer, by eight degrees, to Adam, than 
is the dog to the first dog of his race ; since the age of 
man is fourscore years, and that of a dog but ten. It 
therefore follows, that if both should equally degenerate, 
the alteration would be eight times more remarkable in 
the dog than in the man. 

" The two most necessary questions which result from 
the foregoing premises, are — whether hounds entered at 
hare are perfectly steady, afterwards, to fox ; — and 
whether steadiness is not attainable by more reasonable 
means. Having never hunted with gentlemen who fol- 
low this practise, I must leave the first question for others 
to determine ; but having always had my hounds steady, 
I can myself answer the second." 


Of the Huntsman and the Whippers-in, and their respec- 
tive Duties. 

It very often happens, that the laborious or working 
classes of the community foolishly repine at the situation 
in which Providence has placed them, and are dissatis- 
fied with the means by which they obtain a livelihood ; 
to this, however, the huntsman is an evident, indeed a 
very striking, exception. A huntsman's life cannot be 
otherwise than happy, since he is liberally paid for doing 
that which gives him the greatest possible gratification.* 

Beckford observes that a huntsman " should be young, 
strong, and active, bold and enterprising ; fond of the 
diversion and indefatigable in the pursuit of it; he should 
be sensible and good-tempered ; he ought also to be 
sober ; he should be exact, civil, and cleanly ; he should 
be a good horseman and a good groom ; his voice should 
be strong and clear, and he should have an eye so quick, 
as to perceive which of his hounds carries the scent, 
when all are running ; and should have so excellent an 
ear, as always to distinguish the foremost hounds when 
he does not see them. He should be quiet, patient, and 
without conceit. Such are the excellencies which con- 
stitute a good huntsman : he should not, however, be 

* The above remarks will also apply to the gamekeeper; but scarcely 
perhaps to any other avocations in life— at least, in a manner so forcible 
and striking. 


Duty of the Huntsman. 

too fond of displaying them till necessity calls them forth. 
He should let his hounds alone whilst they can hunt, and 
he should have genius to assist them when they cannot" 
The above qualifications will, however, rarely be found 
united in the same person. Good temper is a most de- 
sirable quality in a huntsman, as circumstances frequently 
occur where it is put to a very severe trial : — when, for 
instance, a fox is found, imprudent sportsmen are apt to 
ride over the scent, as well as to head him back. If the 
cover be small, so that the fox cannot go away unseen, 
heading back may not perhaps be of very great conse- 
quence ; but the case is frequently very different, and 
very vexatious ; but to ride over the scent is, I think, 
more provoking. When a fox has just broke cover, and 
before the hounds have got settled to the scent, how 
often have I seen the scent ridden over ! and that too in 
the most vexatious manner : — it certainly is not to be 
wondered at, however it may be regretted, if, on such 
occasions, the huntsman should forget the respect due 
to his superiors. On the 7th of last January (1826) I 
met the hounds of Hugo Meynell, Esq. at Radborne, 
about three miles from the town of Derby. A fox was 
found in a cover, called the Pasture : he was well viewed 
away ; in fact, he went off in such a manner as to enable 
a number of thoughtless and highly reprehensible sports- 
men to ride before the hounds — they rode over the 
scent : the hounds endeavoured to pick it out from among 
the horses' legs ; but the country presenting no formi- 
dable fences, the mercurial spirits above alluded to were 
enabled to head the hounds repeatedly, so that they 
could not get settled to the scent ; and we ultimately lost 


Anecdotes of the 

the fox ! Could any thing be more provoking ? A few 
weeks prior to this period, I met the York and Ainsty 
fox-hovmds at Skehon Springs, near York. We found 
in Overton Wood, a cover of very considerable extent ; 
which renard seemed very unwilling to leave. At 
length, he broke away, and faced the open country in 
the direction of Beningborough ; but, at a short distance 
from the wood, he crossed a lane, where several secon- 
dary sort of sportsmen were waiting ; who rode over the 
scent in all directions : and though the pursuit was con- 
tinued for more than half an hour, the hounds were 
unable to run well up to their fox, (owing no doubt to 
the circumstance just mentioned) and we of course lost 
him. However, Naylor, the huntsman, kept his temper ; 
though he informed me, that, some time before this 
period, he had broken out into a great rage, in conse- 
quence of a gentleman, not merely riding over the scent, 
but also over the best hound in the pack, and killing it ! 
I have met with several huntsmen who possessed good 
sense, who were not altogether destitute of what is un- 
derstood by the word genius ; but who, however, had 
received scai'cely a common village education. The 
famous Dick Knight, who was huntsman to Lord Althorp, 
and who, with his favourite horse (Contract) is repre- 
sented in a well-known series of engravings, was as 
illiterate as possible, but occasionally elicited something- 
like strokes of genius. This man was a great favourite 
with his master ; was a desperate rider ; and one who 
excelled in low games at cards, in which he passed most 
of his leisure hours. The features of Dick Knight's face 
were by no means prepossessing ; yet they were strongly 


jjn^ i r i f i r^jij »iiii rriv i fr i 'r < r i -' i ■■■■ — ».■■■..■..»■■. i ■■ ■ * i ' iii>» 

famous Dick Knight, 

marked, and very expressive. He is celebrated for 
several extraordinary feats, amongst which, his leap 
down the precipice, known by the name of Dick Knight's 
leap, was perhaps the most remarkable and the most dan- 
gerous. Dick had repeatedly run a particular fox, which 
uniformly beat his hounds ; this same fox became well 
known, and Knight always knew where to find him. 
Renard invariably made for and reached a cover, (Cank 
Wood) distant about ten miles, in defiance of every ex- 
ertion made to kill him ; and in this cover he uniformly 
eluded all further pursuit. Knight was bent on killing 
this fox, whose acknowledged game ought, however, to 
have insured him fau- play ; but Dick, chafed by the 
sneers of the sportsmen who attended his hounds, and 
finding it impossible to kill this fox in the ordinary 
manner, adopted the following mode in order to accom- 
phsh his purpose. He gave his whippers-in the requisite 
directions as to the manner in which they were to second 
his exertions ; and, placing himself in a situation where 
he might be able to view away his old acquaintance, the 
hounds were thrown into the cover, the fox found, and 
viewed off by Dick Knight. But Knight was not content 
with this ; he had resolved to keep him company as long 
or as far as possible : he therefore went away with him 
and kept him in sight for four or five miles : this was an 
exertion of which very few would have been capable ; 
but it answered the purpose, (not a praiseworthy purpose 
certainly ;) for by this method the fox was so pressed 
and so blown, that he was unable to reach the place that 
had always afibrded him secure protection : however, he 
made the most desperate ellbrts, and the hounds reached 
him only one mile from his place of safety ! 


Notices of several 

Shaw, one of the most famous huntsmen of modern 
days, appeared to have something hke genius in his com- 
position, though he was not able to write till he entered 
the service of the Duke of Rutland, when he was about 
thirty years of age. The first time I ever saw this man 
was with the harriers of Lord Moira (Marquis of Hast- 
mgs) about thirty-iive years ago, to which he was hunts- 
man, and it was the first season he had ever acted in 
that capacity. These harriers were afterwards replaced 
by fox-hounds, and Shaw continued to hunt them (several 
years) till they were sold by Lord Moira to Sir Henry 
Harper, of Caulk, Derbyshire. Shaw afterwards became 
huntsman to Sir Thomas Mostyn ; and ultimately served 
the Duke of Rutland in that capacity; with both of 
whom he was a great favourite. He continued in the 
Duke's service for a series of years, until, in fact, he was 
afflicted with some disorder, which disabled him from 
fulfilling the duties of his office. He quitted the service 
of his Grace for some time, and returned again at the 
express desire of the latter ; but he was still incapable of 
going through the fatigue necessarily attendant upon the 
office of huntsman, and he retired. Such, however, had 
been the kindness of his master, that Shaw had realized, 
not a splendid fortune, but sufficient to live respectably 
and keep a couple of hunters. When Sir Bellingham 
Graham had the Pycheley hunt, Shaw was frequently 
out; he also visited other parts, and I believe resides at 
present in Northamptonshire. 

Shaw was not only a favourite with the Duke, his 
master, but with those who attended his hounds. He 
was a good horseman, very active in the field, civil and 


Modern Huntsmen. 

respectful, and sometimes manifested what Beckford 
would call genius. On one occasion, when he had been 
running a fox for some time in the Vale of Belvoir, the 
hounds came to a cover, which the fox had evidently 
entered : they were soon through it ; and went away as 
merrily as possible on the other side. But, before they 
had run far, Shaw stopped them, and led them again to 
the cover against the opinion of the field ; where, how- 
ever, he found his original fox and killed him ! A fresh 
fox had evidently gone away when the hounds first en- 
tered the cover, and they changed ; of which Shaw was 
soon aware, and hence we see his reason for returning. 
Shaw became a huntsman without going through those 
probationary steps, which generally lead to the office : — 
he never officiated in the subordinate capacity of whip- 

I have seen several good huntsmen within the last half 
score years ; and I am of opinion that few packs of fox- 
hounds were ever better managed in the field than the 
Quorndon, a few years ago, when Sebright was the 
huntsman, assisted by those two very active whippers-in, 
Richard Burton and Will Head. — They are all light 
weights, and good riders — Sebright in particular. The 
latter is huntsman to Lord Fitzwilliam ; Burton remains 
still at Quorndon with Mr. Osbaldeston ; Head has for 
several years hunted Sir Harry Mainwaring's hounds. 

Richards, who hunts the Badsworth, seems to under- 
stand his business ; but, unfortunately for a huntsman, 
he cannot be called a ligJit weight. He is, however, a 
good rider, and an active man in the field. In the year 
1825, 1 visited the Badsworth ; and had thus an oppor- 


Slow Huntsmen improper for Fox-hounds. 

tunity of observing the motions of Richards : I pro- 
ceeded to Lord Harewood's hunt, where the operations 
of George Payne (his lordship's huntsman) formed a 
striking contrast to those of Richards. The hounds 
must, in a certain degree, take their tone and manner 
from the character of the huntsman : — the Badsworth 
are quick and active ; Lord Harewood's are more slow 
and more philosophical. There was one hound in par- 
ticular in Lord Harewood's pack that struck my atten- 
tion : I remarked to Payne, the huntsman, that I was 
much pleased with the hound in question : — " That 
hoxmd, Sir, (said he) would hunt through York Min- 

Slow huntsmen will kill but very few foxes : they are 
in fact a check upon their hounds ; which, with a high 
scent only, are able to run up to their game ; when it is 
indeed out of the huntsman's power to prevent it. " What 
avails it to be told which way the fox is gone when he 
is so far before that you cannot hunt him ? A New- 
market boy, with a good understanding and a good 
voice, might be preferable perhaps to an indifferent and 
slack huntsman ; he would press on his hounds while the 
scent was good, and the foxes he killed, he would kill 
handsomely. — A perfect knowledge of the intricacies of 
hunting is chiefly of use to slow huntsmen and bad hounds, 
since they more often stand in need of it. — Activity is 
the first requisite in a huntsman to a pack of fox-hounds ; 
a want of it no judgment can make amends for ; but the 
most difficult of all his undertakings is the distinguishing 
of different scents, and knowing, with any certainty, the 
scent of the hunted fox. Much speculation is here re~ 


Lord Darlington as a Huntsman. 

quired — the length of time hounds remain at fault — 
the difference of ground — change of weather — all these 
contrihute to increase the difficulty, and require a nicety 
of judgment and a precision, much above the compre- 
hension of most huntsmen." 

Lord Darlington performs the duty of huntsman to 
his own pack ; but I cannot say that I much admire his 
lordship in that capacity. He appears to be impatient, 
and his method seems to partake as much of coursing the 
fox, as of hunting him. 

The qualification of being a ''good groom,'' which 
Beckford states as essential in a huntsman, is not, how- 
ever, so indispensable as he seems to think. Fox-hunting 
has been on the increase since Beckford's time ; the es- 
tablishments in general are more extensive ; and, on this 
account, the management of the hounds and the care of 
the horses form two distinct arrangements. In small 
establishments, the huntsman may officiate as principal 
groom ; but it is probably too much to expect that a 
clever groom and a good huntsman should be united in 
the same person. 

A huntsman should be very punctual in arriving at the 
fixture or place of meeting ; and, when at the cover side, 
he should throw in his hounds as quietly as possible, and 
see that they spread the cover properly. When the fox 
has gone away, "the huntsman should certainly set oft' 
with his foremost hounds, and keep as close to them 
afterwards as he conveniently can. No hounds then can 
slip dow n the wind, and get out of his hearing ; he will 
also see how far they carry the scent ; a necessary know- 



When a Huntsman 

ledge ; for without it, he never can make a cast, with 
any certainty. 

'* It is his business to be ready at all times, to lend 
them that assistance they so frequently stand in need of, 
and which, when they are first at fault, is most critical. 
A fox-hound, at that time, will exert himself most ; he 
afterwards cools, and becomes more indifferent about 
his game. Those huntsmen who do not get forward 
enough, to take advantage of this eagerness and impetu- 
osity, and direct it properly, seldom know enough of 
hunting to be of much use to them afterwards. 

"A huntsman should always listen to his hounds, 
whilst they are running in cover ; he should be particu- 
larly attentive to the head hounds, and he should be 
constantly on his guard against a skirter, for if there ai-e 
two scents, he must be wrong. — Generally speaking, the 
best scent is least likely to be that of the hunted fox : 
and as a fox seldom suffers hounds to run up to him, as 
long as he is able to prevent it ; so, nine times out of ten, 
when foxes are hallooed early in the day, they are all 
fresh foxes. The hounds most likely to be right, are the 
hard-running, line-hunting hounds ; or such as the hunts- 
man knows had the lead, before there arose any doubt 
of changing. With regard to the fox, if he breaks over 
an open country, it is no sign that he is hard run, for 
they seldom at any time will do that, unless they are a 
great way before the hounds. Also, if he runs up the 
-wind — they seldom or ever do that, when they have been 
long hunted, and grow weak ; and when they run their 
.foil, that also may direct him. 


should assist his Hounds. 

" The huntsman, at a check, had better let liis liounds 
alone, or content himself with holding them forward, 
without taking them off their noses. Hounds that are 
not used to be cast, will of themselves acquire a better 
cast than it is in the power of any huntsman to give them ; 
will spread more, and try better for the scent; and, if 
they are in health and spirits, they will want no en- 

"If they are at fault, and have made their own cast, 
(which the huntsman should always first encourage them 
to do) it is then his business to assist them further. The 
first cast I bid my huntsman make, is generally a regular 
one ; not choosing to rely entirely on his judgment : if 
that does not succeed, he is then at liberty to follow his 
own opinion, and proceed as observation and genius may 
direct. When such a cast is made, I like to see some 
mark of good sense and meaning in it ; whether down 
the wind, or towards some likely cover, or strong earth : 
however, as it is at best uncertain, and as the huntsman 
and the fox may be of different opinions, I always wish 
to see a regular cast, before I see a knowing one ; which, 
as a last resource, should not be called forth till it is 
wanted. The letting homids alone is but a negative 
goodness in a huntsman ; whereas it is true, that thts last 
shows real genius ; and to be perfect, must be born u ith 
him. There is a fault, however, which a knowing hunts- 
man is too apt to commit: he will find a fresh fox, and 
then claim the merit of having recovered the hunted one. 
It always is dangerous to throw hounds into a cover to 
retrieve a lost scent; and, unless they hit him in, is not 
to be depended on. OvWen to the last extremity, should 



a knowing cast not succeed, your huntsman is in no wise 
blameable : mine, I remember, lost me a good chace, by 
persevering too long in a favourite cast : but he gave me 
so many good reasons why the fox ought to have gone 
that way, that I returned perfectly well satisfied, telling 
him at the same time, that, if the fox was a fool, he 

could not help it. 

"A huntsman will complain of hounds for staying 
behind in cover : it is a great fault, and makes the hound 
that has it of little value ; a fault frequently occasioned 
by his own mismanagement. Having drawn one cover, 
he hurries away to another, and leaves the whipper-in 
to bring on the hounds after him ; but the whipper-in is 
seldom less desirous of getting forward than the hunts- 
man; and, unless they come off easily, it is not often that 
he gives himself much concern about them. Also, hounds 
that are left too long at their walks, will acquire this trick 
from hunting'by themselves, and are not easily broken 

off it. 

'« Before a huntsman goes into the kennel to draft his 
hounds, let him determine within himself the number of 
hounds'he intends to take out ; as likewise the number 
of young hounds that he can venture in the country 
where he is going to hunt. Different countries may 
require different hounds ; some may require more hoimds 
than others : it is not an easy matter to draft hounds 
properly ; nor can any expedition be made in it, without 

some method. 

'' If the huntsman, without inconvenience, can begm 
drawing at the farthest cover down the wind, and so 
draw from cover to cover up the wind till you find, let 


Fox Huunds should draw. 

him do it — it will have many advantages attending it : 
he will draw the same covers in half the time ; there will 
be less difficulty in getting the hounds off; and as the 
fox will most probably run the covers that have already 
been drawn, you are certain not to change. 

"Judicious huntsmen will observe where foxes like 
best to lie. Generally speaking, I think they are fondest of 
such covers as lie high, and are dry and thick at bottom ; 
such also as lie out of the wind ; and such as are on the 
sunny side of hills. The same cover where you find one 
fox, when it has remained quiet any time, will probably 
produce another. 

" It is to little purpose to draw hazle coppices at the 
time when nuts are gathered ; furze covers, or two or 
three years coppices, are then the only quiet places a 
fox can kennel in : they also are disturbed when pheasant 
shooting begins, and older covers are more likely. The 
season when foxes are most wild and strong is about 
Christmas ; a huntsman then must lose no time in drawing 
— he must draw up the wind, unless the cover be very 
large, in which case it may be better perhaps to cross it, 
giving the hounds a side wind, lest he should be obliged 
to turn down the wind at last : in either case, let him 
draw as quietly as he can. 

" Young coppices, at this time, are quite bare : the 
most likely places are four or five years coppices, and 
such as are furzy at bottom. 

" Some huntsmen draw too quick — some too slow. 
The time of the day, the behaviovu- of his hounds, and 
the covers they are drawing, will direct an observing 
huntsman in the pace which he ought to go. 



Of Casting 

" When you try a furze brakcy let me give you one 
caution : never halloo a fox till you see he is got quite 
clear of it. When a fox is found in such places, hounds 
are sure to go off" well at him ; and it must be owing 
either to bad scent, bad hounds, bad management, or 
bad luck, if they fail to kill him afterwards. Huntsmen, 
whilst their hounds are drawing, or are at fault, fre- 
quently make so much noise themselves, that they can 
hear nothing else ; they should always have an ear to a 

" Though a huntsman ought to be as silent as possible 
at going into a cover, he cannot be too noisy at coming 
out of it again ; and if at any time he should turn back 
suddenly, let him give as much notice of it as he can to 
his hounds, or he will leave many of them behind him ; 
and, should he turn down the wind, he may see no more 
of them. 

''Though I Uke to see fox hounds cast wide and for- 
ward, and dislike to see them pick a cold scent through 
flocks of sheep to no purpose, yet I must beg leave to 
observe, that I dislike still more to see that unaccount- 
able hurry, which huntsmen will sometimes put themselves 
into, the moment their hounds are at fault. Time ought 
always to be allowed them, to make their own cast ; and 
if a huntsman is judicious, he will take that opportunity 
to consider, what part he himself has next to act ; but 
instead of this, I have seen hounds hurried away the 
very instant they came to a fault, a wide cast made, and 
the hounds at last brought back to the very spot whence 
they were so abruptly taken, and where, if the huntsman 
had had a minute's patience, they would have hit off the 


scent themselves. It is always great impertinence in a 
huntsman to pretend to make a cast himself, before the 
hounds have made theirs. Prudence should direct hun 
to encourage, and, I may say, humour his hounds, in the 
cast they seem inclined to make, and either to stand still, 
or trot round with them, as circumstances may require. 

" I have seen huntsmen make their cast on bad ground, 
when they might as easily have made it on good. I have 
seen them suffer their hounds to try in the midst of a 
flock of sheep, when there was a hedge, near which they 
might have been sure to take the scent ; and I have seen 
a cast made with every hound at their horses' heels. — 
When a hound tries for the scent, his nose is to the 
ground : when a huntsman makes a cast, his eye should 
be on his hounds ; and when he sees them spread wide, 
and try as they ought, his cast may then be quick. 

" When hounds are at fault, and the huntsman halloos 
them off the line of the scent, the whippers-in smacking 
their whips, and rating them after him, if he trots away 
with them, may not they think the business of the day 
is over ? — Hounds never, in my opinion, (unless in par- 
ticular cases, or when you go to a halloo) should be taken 
entirely off their noses : but, when lifted, should be con- 
stantly made to try as they go. Some huntsmen have 
a dull, stupid way of speaking to their hounds ; at these 
times, little should be said ; and that should have both, 
meaning and expression in it. 

*' When your huntsman makes a cast, I hope he makes 
it perfect one way, before he tries another, as much time 
is lost by going backwards and forwards. You will see 
huntsmen, when a forward cast docs not succeed, come 


Of Foxes running the Roads. 

slowly back again : they should return as fast as they 

" When hounds are at fault, and it is probable that 
the fox has headed back, your cast forward should be 
short and quick ; for the scent is then likely to be behind 
you : too obstinate a perseverance forward has been the 
loss of many foxes. In heathy countries, if there are 
many roads, foxes will always run them in dry weather ; 
when hounds, therefore, overrun the scent, if your 
huntsman returns to the first cross road, he probably 
will hit off the scent again. 

*' In large covers, if there are many roads, in bad 
scenting days when these roads are dry, or after a thaw, 
when they carry, it is necessary your huntsman should 
be near to his hounds to help them, and hold them for- 
ward. Foxes will rvui the roads at these times, and 
hounds cannot always own the scent. When they are 
at fault on a dry road, let not your himtsman turn back 
too soon ; let him not stop till he can be certain the fox 
is not gone on. The hounds should try on both sides the 
road at once : if he perceives that they try on one side 
only, on his return let him try the other. 

" If a fox runs up the wind when first found, and af- 
terwards turns, he seldom, if ever, turns again. This 
observation may not only be of use to your huntsman in 
his cast, but may be of use to you, if you should lose the 

** When you are pursuing a fox over a country, the 
scent being bad, and the fox a long way before, without 
ever having been pressed, if his point should be for strong- 
earths that are open, or for large covers, where game is 


Recovering a hunted Fox when Scent fails. 

in plenty, it may be acting wisely to take oft' the hounds 
at the first fault they come to ; for the fox will go many 
miles for your one, and probably will run you out of all 
scent ; but if he should not, you wiU be likely to change 
at the first cover you come into : when a fox has been 
hard pressed, he should not be easily given up. 

" When you would recover a hunted fox, and have no 
longer a scent to hunt him by, a long cast to the first 
cover he seems to point to, is the only resource you have 
left : get there as fast as you can, and then let your 
hounds try as slowly and as quietly as possible : if hunt- 
ing after him is hopeless, and a long cast does not succeed ^ 
you had better give him up. Need I remind you, that, 
when the scent lies badly, and you find it impossible for 
hounds to run, you had better return home, since the 
next day may be more favourable. It surely is a great 
fault in a huntsman to persevere in bad weather, when 
hounds cannot riui, and when there is not a probabihty 
of kilHng a fox. Some there are, who, after they have 
lost one fox for want of scent to hunt him by, will find 
another ; this makes their hounds slack, and sometimes 
vicious ; it also disturbs the covers to no purpose. Some 
sportsmen are more lucky in their days than others. If 
you hunt every other day, it is possible they may be all 
bad, and the intermediate days all good ; an indifferent 
pack therefore, by hunting on good days, may kill foxes, 
without any merit ; and a good pack, notwithstanding 
all their exertion, may lose foxes which they deserved to 

"A perfect knowledge of his country certainly is a 
great help to a huntsman ; if your's as yet has it not, 


Of a tired Fox. 

great allowance ought to be made. The trotting away 
with hounds to make a long and knowing cast, is a pri- 
vilege which a new huntsman cannot pretend to : an ex- 
perienced one may safely say, a fox has made for such 
a cover, when he has known, perhaps, that nine out of 
ten, with the wind in the same quarter, have constantly 
gone thither. 

" In a country where there are large earths, a fox 
that knows the country, and tries any of them, seldom 
fails to try the rest. A huntsman may take advantage 
of this ; they are certain casts, and may help him to get 
nearer to his fox. 

" Great caution is necessary when a fox runs into a 
village : if he is halloo'd there, get forward as fast as you 
can. Foxes, when tired, will lie down any where, and 
are often lost by it. A wide cast is not the best to recover 
a tired fox with tired hounds : they should hvmt him out, 
inch by inch, though they are ever so long about it, for 
the reason I have just given, that he will lie down any 

" In chases and forestSj where high fences are made to 
preserve the coppices, I like to see a huntsman put only 
a few hounds over, enough to carry on the scent, and 
get forward with the rest : it is a proof that he knows 
his business. 

"A huntsman must take care, where foxes are in 
plenty, that he does not run the heel ; for it frequently 
happens, that hounds can run the wrong way of the scent 
better than they can the right, when one is up the wind 
and the other down. 

" Fox-hunters, I think, are never guilty of the fault of 
trying up the wind, before they have tried down. I 


Kunning the Foil. 

have known them lose foxes, rather than condescend to 
try up the wind at all. 

'* When a huntsman hears a halloo, and has five or 
six couple of hounds along with him, the pack not 
running, let him get forward with those which he has : 
when they are on the scent, the rest will soon join them. 

" Let him lift his tail hounds, and get them forward 
after the rest : it can do no hurt. But let him be cautious 
how he lifts any hounds to get forward before the rest : 
it always is dangerous, and foxes are sometimes lost by it. 

** When a fox runs his foil in cover, if you suffer all 
your hounds to hunt on the line of him, they will foil the 
ground, and tire themselves to little purpose. I have 
before told you, that your huntsman, at such a time, may 
stop the tail hounds, and throw them in at head. I am 
almost inclined to say, it is the only tune it should be 
done. Whilst hounds run straight, it cannot be of any 
use ; for they will get on faster with the scent than they 
would without it. 

"When hounds are hunting a cold scent, and point 
towards a cover, let a whipper-in get forward to the op- 
posite side of it. Should the fox break before the hounds 
reach the cover, stop them, and get them nearer to him. 

" When a fox persists in running in a strong cover, 
lies down often behind the hounds, and they are slack in 
hunting him, let the huntsman get into the cover to them. 
It may make the fox break, it may keep him off his foil, 
or may prevent the hounds from giving him up. 

" When hounds are at fault, and cannot make it out 
of themselves, let the first cast be quick ; the scent is 
then good, nor are the hounds likely to go over it : as 


Hounds Casting themselves. 

the scent gets worse, the cast should be slower, and be 
more cautiously made. This is an essential part of 
hunting, and which, I am sorry to say, few huntsmen 
attend to. I wish they would remember the following 
rules, viz. that with a good scent, their cast should be 
quick ; with a bad scent, slow ; and that, when the 
hounds are picking along a cold scent, they are not to 
cast them at all. 

"When hounds are at fault, and staring about, trust- 
ing solely to their eyes, and to their ears, the making a 
cast with them, I apprehend, wovdd be to little purpose. 
The likeliest place for them to find a scent, is where 
they left it ; and when the fault is evidently in the dog, 
a forward cast is least likely to recover the scent. 

" When hounds are making a good and regular cast, 
trying for the scent as they go, suffer not your huntsman 
to say a word to them : it cannot do any good, and pro- 
bably may make them go over the scent. 

"When hounds come to a check, a huntsman should 
observe the tail hounds : they are the least likely to 
overrun the scent, and he may see by them how far they 
brought it. In most packs there are some hounds that 
will shew the point of the fox ; and, if attended to, will 
direct his cast : when such hounds follow unwillingly, he 
may be certain the rest of the pack are running without 
the scent. 

"When he casts his hounds, let him not cast wide, 
without reason ; for of course it will take more time. 
Huntsmen, in general, keep too forward in their casts ; 
or, as a sailor would say, keep too long on one tacJc. 
They should endeavour to hit off the scent by crossing 


Of Casting lound Sheep. 

the line of it. Two parallel lines, you know, can never 

" When he goes to a halloo, let him be careful, lest his 
hounds run the heel, as much time is lost by it. I once 
saw this mistake made by a famous hvmtsman : — after we 
had left a cover, which we had been drawing, a disturbed 
fox was seen to go into it ; he was halloo'd, and we re- 
turned. The huntsman, who never enquired njhere the 
fox was seen, or on which side the cover he entered, 
threw his hounds in at random; and, as it happened, on 
the opposite side : they immediately took the heel of 
him, broke cover, and hunted the scent back to his very 

" Different countries require different casts : such 
huntsmen as have been used to a woodland, and inclosed 
country, I have seen lose time in an open country, where 
wide casts are always necessary. 

" When you want to cast round a flock of sheep, the 
whipper-in ought to drive them the other way, lest they 
should keep running on before you. 

"A fox seldom goes over or under a gate, when he 
can avoid it. 

*' Huntsmen are frequently very conceited, and very 
obstinate. Often have I seen them, when their hounds 
came to a check, turn directly back, on seeing hounds at 
head, which they had no opinion of. They supposed 
the fox was gone another way ; in which case, Mr. 
Bayes's remark in the Rehearsal always occurs to me : 
" that if he should not, what then becomes of their sup- 
pose." Better, gurely, would it be, to make a short cast 
forward first; they then might be certain the hounds 


Of obstinate Hounds and obstinate Huntsmen. 

were wrong, and of course, could make their own cast 
with greater confidence. The advantage, next to that 
of knowing where the fox is gone, is that of knowing, 
with certainty, where he is not. 

" Most huntsmen hke to have all their hounds turned 
after them, when they make a cast : I wonder not at 
them for it, but I am always sorry when I see it done ; 
for, till I find a huntsman that is infallible, I shall con- 
tinue to think, the more my hounds spread, the better : 
as long as they are within sight or hearing, it is sufficient. 
Many a time have I seen an obstinate hound hit off" the 
scent, when an obstinate huntsman, by casting the wrong- 
way, has done all in his power to prevent it.* Two 
foxes I remember to have seen killed in one day, by 
skirting hounds, whilst the huntsman was making his 
cast the contrary way. 

* It is recorded, that, "in drawing a strong cover, a young bitch gave 
tongue very freely, while none of the other hounds challenged: the whipper- 
in rated to no purpose ; the huntsman insisted she was wrong, and the 
whip was applied with great severity — in doing this, the lash accidentally 
struck one of her eyes out of the socket. Notwithstanding this painful 
situation, the bitch again took the scent, and proved herself right, for a fox 
had stole away, and she broke cover after him unheeded and alone. How- 
ever, after much delay and cold hunting, the pack did hit off the chase : 
at some distance a farmer informed the sportsmen that they were far behind 
their fox ; for that a single hound, very bloody about the head, had passed 
a field off from him, and was running breast high, and that there was little 
chance of their getting up to him. The pack, from her coming to a check, 
did at length get up ; and after some cold hunting, the bitch again hit off 
the scent : the fox was killed, after a long and severe run, and the eye of 
the bitch, which had hung pendant during the chase, was taken off by a 
pair of scissors after the fox was dead !" 


Trying back for a Fox. 

" When hounds, running in cover, come into a road, 
and horses are on before, let tlie huntsman hold them 
quickly on beyond where the horses have been, trying 
the opposite side as he goes along. Should the horse- 
men have been there long enough to have headed back 
the fox, let them then try back. Condemn me not for 
suftering hounds to try back, when the fox has been 
headed back ; I recommend it at no other time. 

*' When your hounds are divided into many parts, you 
had better go off with the first fox that breaks. The 
ground will soon get tainted, nor will hounds like a cover 
where they are often changing. 

" The heading a fox back at first, if the cover be not 
a large one, is oftentimes of service to hounds, as he will 
not stop, and cannot go off unseen. When a fox has 
been hard run, I have known it turn out otherwise ; and 
hounds that would easily have killed him out of the cover, 
have left him in it. 

" When a fox has been often headed back on one side 
of a cover, and a huntsman knows there is not any body 
on the other side to halloo him, the first fault his hounds 
come to, let him cast that way, lest the fox should be 
gone off; and if he is in the cover, he may still recover 

''The two principal things which a huntsman has to 
attend to, are the keeping of his hounds healthy and 
steady. The first is attained by cleanliness and proper 
food ; the latter, by putting as seldom as possible, any 
unsteady ones amongst them. 

" When a fox is lost, the huntsman, on his return home, 
should examine himself, and endeavour to find in what 


What constitutes a Perfect Huntsman. 

he might have done better ; he may by this means make 
the very losing of a fox of use to him. 

** Sometimes you will meet with a good kennel hunts- 
man ; sometimes an active and judicious one in the field ; 
some are clever at finding a fox, others are better after 
he is found ; whilst perfection in a huntsman, like per- 
fection in any thing else, is scarcely any where to be met 

" The keeping hounds clean and healthy, and bringing 
them into the field in their fullest vigour, is the excellence 
of a good kennel huntsman; if besides this, he makes 
his hounds both love and fear him ; if he is active, and 
presses them on while the scent is good, always aiming 
to keep as near to the fox as he can ; if, when his hounds 
are at fault, he makes his cast with judgment, not casting 
the wrong way first, and blundering on the right at last, 
as many do ; if, added to this, he is patient and perse- 
vering, never giving up a fox while there remains a 
chance of killing him, he then is a perfect huntsman." 

With regard to the whippers-in — on leaving the kennel, 
the place of the first whipper-in is before the hounds ; 
the second whipper-in should follow them at some little 
distance. — The first whipper-in may be considered as a 
second huntsman, and should possess as nearly as pos- 
sible the same good qualities ; but acting, as he must,under 
the direction of the huntsman, a person may fulfil the 
duties of this office without the experience so essential 
to a good huntsman. He must always maintain to the 
huntsman's halloo, and stop such hounds as divide from 
it : when stopped, he should get to the huntsman with 
them as soon as possible. He must always be content 


Anecdote of Will Dean. 

to act in a subordinate capacity, except when circum- 
stances require that he should act otherwise. If, for 
instance, the huntsman happen to be thrown out, it is 
the duty of the first whipper-in to supply his place. — 
Beckford says, " I prefer an excellent Avhipper-in to an 
excellent huntsman. The opinion I believe is new ; — I 
must endeavour to explain it. My meaning is this, that 
I think I should have better sport, and kill more foxes, 
with a moderate huntsman, and an excellent whipper-in, 
than with the best of huntsmen, without such an assist- 
ant. You will say, perhaps, that a good huntsman will 
make a good whipper-in ; not such a one as I mean; his 
talent must be born with him. My reasons are, that 
good hounds, (and I would not keep bad ones) stand 
oftener in need of the one than the other ; and genius, 
which in a whipper-in, if attended by obedience, his first 
requisite, can do no hurt ; in a huntsman, is a dangerous, 
though desirable, quality : and if not accompanied with 
a large share of prudence, and I may s^y humility, will 
often spoil your sport, and hurt your hounds. A gen- 
tleman told me, he heard the famous Will Dean, when 
his hoimds were running hard in a line with Daventry, 
from whence they were at that time many miles distant, 
swear exceedingly at the whipper-in, saying, " What 
business have yoti here?" the man was amazed at the 
question, 'W/y dont you know" said he, "and be d — 'd 
to yon, that the great earth at Daventry is open ?" — 
The man got forward, and reached the earth just time 
enough to see the fox go in. If therefore whippers-in 
are at liberty to act as they shall think right, they are 
much less confined than the himtsman himself, wlio must 



The Steadiness of a Pack of Fox Hounds 

follow his hounds ; and consequently they have greater 
scope to exert their genius, if they have any." 

There ai*e many sportsmen, however, who do not agree 
in opinion with Beckford on the subject just quoted ; 
nor can I help thinking that the success of the chase 
depends more upon the genius of the huntsman, than 
upon that of the first whipper-in. The making and 
keeping the pack steady depends much upon him, as a 
huntsman should seldom, if ever, flog a hound. When 
a whipper-in is desirous to stop the head hounds, he 
should, if possible, get to the head of them before he 
attempts to stop them. Rating behind is often of little 
use, and if they are in cover, it may prevent him from 
ascertaining which are the culprits. When hounds are 
running a fox, he should content himself with stopping- 
such as are riotous, and should get them forward. " They 
may be condemned on the spot, but the punishment 
should be deferred till the next day, when they may be 
taken out on purpose to commit the fault, and receive 
the punishment." 

Sometimes a whipper-in will rate young hounds, when 
he perceives them about to commit a fault ; this may 
prevent them for that time; but will not deter them 
pei'haps for the future, as they will bo very likely to do 
the same again on the first opportunity which is presented 
to them. He should let them alone till he has completely 
ascertained what they would be at— and he may then 
chastise them according to the degree of the offence. If 
when a whipper-in rate a hound, the hound pays no at- 
tention to it, he should take him up immediately and 
give him a severe flogging. Whippers-in are too apt to 


depends much on the \Vhi|iper-in. 

continue rating when tliey find rating is of no avail ; at 
the same time, he should never strike a hound without 
the animal being perfectly conscious for what the blow 
has been inflicted. A blow should never be given to a 
hound that does not deserve it ; but whenever a blow is 
called for, it should be severely administered. 

" Such hounds as are notorious offenders should also 
feel the lash and hear a rate as they go to cover ; it may 
be an useful hint to thein, and may prevent a severe 
flogging afterwards. A sensible whipper-in will wait his 
opportunity to single out his hound ; he will then hit him 
hard, and rate him well ; whilst a foolish one will often 
hit a dog he did not intend to strike ; will ride full gallop 
into the midst of the hounds ; will perhaps i*ide over 
some of the best of them, and put the whole pack into 
confusion ! " Whenever a hound deserves the lash, the 
whipper-in should hit him first and rate him afterwards ; 
as a hound, if rated first, will naturally enough avoid the 
whip, if possible. 

The second whipper-in is frequently a youth, ignorant 
in a great degree of the business of hunting ; and indeed, 
if such an one be tractable, he will answer the purpose. 
He should never encourage or rate a hound, but when 
he is quite certain it is right to do so ; nor should he 
ever get forward whilst a single hound remains behind — 
he should be particularly careful to suffer no hound to 
remain behind in cover. 

Beckford says the first whipper-in is sometimes con- 
ceited ; I have known instances where the second whip- 
per-in has manifested more than a sufficient portion of 
this baneful quality: as a specimen of which, I give the 



Funeral of Moody, 

following instance : — The Cheshire fox-hounds (Sir 
Harry Mainwaring's) on the 31st of January, 1826, met 
at Shavington, the seat of Lord Kilmorey. A brace of 
foxes were found in a neighbouring plantation, one of 
which gave us a run of nearly an hour, and was lost. 
Another fox was found at Combermere, which afforded 
a very good run of fifty minutes. But, prior to the con- 
clusion of the business, Will Head's (the huntsman) horse 
came to a stand still ; the horse of the first whipper-in 
(Joseph Howard) was completely exhausted at the same 
time, and took his station by the side of the huntsman's 
horse: Henry GaiF(the second whipper-in) had his horse 
still in a going condition. The huntsman called to him 
to lend him his horse, when he replied, " 111 see you 

d 'd first ; exultingly rode forward, and killed the 


The merits of famous huntsmen have frequently been 
recorded ; but perhaps Moody alone, as a whipper-in, 
has been rendered immortal through the medium of the 
press. Moody was, for thirty years, whipper-in to Mr. 
Forrester's hounds in Shropshire. He was carried to 
his last home by six earth stoppers, attended by many 
friends. Directly after the coi-pse, followed his favourite 
horse (whom he used to call Old Soul) with a fox's brush 
at the front of the bridle ; his cap, whip, boots, &c. 
across the saddle. After the burial service was read, 
three view halloos were given over his grave. This 
mode of consigning the earthly remains of Moody to the 
grave was in consequence of his own express desire 
while living : and the event has been commemorated by 
the following song frf)m the pen of W. Pearce, Esq^ 


the famous Whipper-in. 

which was frequently sung with uncommon effect by 
Incledon : — 

You all knew Tom Moody, the Whipper-in, well: 

The bell just done tolling was honest Tom's knell : 

A more able sportsman ne'er follow'd a hound 

Through a country, well known to him, fifty miles round s 

No hound ever chnllcngd so deep in the wood, 

But Tom well knew the sound, and could tell if 't was good ; — 

And ALL, with attention, would eagerly mark, 

When he cheer'd up the pack witli — " Hark ! Ratller ! hark! hark ! 

High ! — wind him ! and cross him ! 

Now, Rattler, boy ! —Hark !" 

Six crafty hearth-stoppers, in hunter's-green drest, 
Supported poor Tom to "an earth" made for rest: 
His horse, which he styld his " Old Soul," next apjjear'd, 
On whose forehead the brush of his last fox was rear'd ; 
Whip, cap, boots, and spurs, in a trophy were bound ; 
And here and there follow'd an old straggling hound. 
Ah ! no more at his halloo yon vales will they trace ! 
Nor the Wrekin* resound his first scream in the chase! 

With " high-over ! now press him ! 

Tally ho! tally ho!" 

Tom thus spoke to his friends, ere he gave up his breath ; — 
" Since I see you're rcsolv'd to be in at the death. 
One favour bestow — 'tis the last I shall crave ; — 
Give a rattling view halloo thrice over my grave : 
And unless at that warning I lift up my head. 
My boys ! you may fairly conclude I am dead !" 
Honest Tom was obey'd, and the shout rent the sky, 
For ev'ry voice join'd in th' enlivening cry ! 

" Tally ho ! hark forward I 

Tally ho! tally ho!" 

# The famous mountain ja Shropshire. 



Of the Time of Meeting.— Of Blood.— The Opinion of 
the late Mr. Meynell upon the Subject of Blood, as 
well as on Homids and Fox Hunting. — Of Draiving. — 
Riding to Hounds, and the Manageinent of the Run. — 
Changing Foxes.— Hounds at Fault. — Of Halloos. 
— Bag Foxes. — Of Fox Courts. — Treatment of Cubs. 
— Digging Foxes. — Of Badgers. 

I have already made a few observations on the methods 
of the ancient and modern schools of fox-hunting, in 
which I have not forgotten to notice the difference of 
the hour of meeting. It is not likely that any remarks 
which I may offer upon this subject will have much in- 
fluence upon what has become the general custom ; but, 
it must be admitted that an early hour is most favourable 
to sport. A fox is then more easily found than at a later 
period, and the mol'ning is perhaps the time which gene- 
rally affords best scent : blood is consequently more 
easily obtained under such circumstances; which, ac- 
cording to Beckford, constitutes the leading principle 
and indeed the very essence of fox-hunting. He thus 
expresses himself — " the whole art of fox-hunting being 
to keep the hounds well in blood : sport is but a secon- 
dary consideration with a true fox-hunter. The first is, 
the killing of the fox — hence arises the eagerness of 
pursuit and the chief pleasure of the chase. I confess 
I esteem blood so necessary to a pack of fox-hounds, 


Difi'erence of Opinion in respect to Blood. 

that, with regard to myself, I ahva) s return home better 
pleased with an indifferent chase, with death at the end 
of it, than with the best chase possible if it ends with the 
loss of the fox." It cannot" be denied that the death of 
the fox is a satisfactory termination of the chase ; but, 
on the indispensable necessity of blood to a pack of fox- 
hounds, all fox-huntei's are not agreed. I am perfectly 
aware that the opinion expressed by Beckford on the 
subject of blood is generally entertained; but there has 
been one exception at least, and that exception entitled 
to much more than ordinary consideration : — the justly 
celebrated Mr. Meynell, we are told, "was more indif- 
ferent about blood than most masters of hounds." His 
notions on the subject of fox-hunting having appeared 
through the medium of the press, I will quote them in 
this place for the benefit of the reader : — 

" Hugo Meynell, Esq. of Quorndon, in the county of 
Leicester, was, doubtless, the most successful sports- 
man of his time ; producing the steadiest, wisest, best, 
and handsomest pack of fox-hovmds in the kingdom. 

" His object in breeding hounds was, to combine 
strength with beauty, and steadiness with high mettle. 

" His idea of perfection of shape was, short backs, 
open bosoms, straight legs, and compact feet; as the 
greatest and first considerations in form. 

"The first qualities he considered were, fine noses 
and stout runners. 

" In the spring of the year he broke in his hounds at 
hare, to find out their propensities, which, when at all 
flagrant, they early manifested, and he drafted them ac- 
cordinti to their defects. 


The System of the 

" After hare-hunting, they were, the remaming part 
of the summer, daily walked amongst riot. 

" When the hunting season commenced, his hounds 
wei'e hunted in the woodlands, amidst abundance of 
foxes, for two months. 

"In the month of November, the pack was carefully 
divided into the old and young pack. The old pack 
consisted of three years' old and upwards ; and no two 
years' old was admitted, except a very high opinion was 
entertained of his virtues and abilities. 

" The young hounds were hunted twice a week, as 
much in woodlands as possible, and in the most un- 
popular coverts. The young pack had always a few 
couple of steady old hounds with them. 

" The old pack hunted the best country. When any 
bad faults were discovered, they were immediately draft- 
ed, for fear of contamination. 

" Skirting, over-running the scent, and babbling, were 
the greatest faults. 

" Perfections consisted of true guiders in hard run- 
ning, and close patient hunters in a cold scent — together 
with stoutness. 

"Mr. Meynell's hounds were criticised, by himself 
and his friends, in the most minute manner : every hound 
had his peculiar talents, and was sure to have a fair op- 
portunity of displaying them. Some had the remark- 
able faculty of finding a fox, which they would do, almost 
invariably, notwithstanding twenty or thirty couple were 
out in the same cover ; some had the propensity to hunt 
the doubles and short turns ; some were inclined to be 
hard runners ; some had a i-emarkable faculty of hunting 


celebrated Hugo Mcyncll, Esq. 

the drag of a fox, which they would do very late in the 
day ; and sometimes the hardest runners were the best 
hunters : and fortunate was the year when such excel- 
lencies prevailed. 

" Mr. Meynell prided himself on the steadiness and 
docility of his hounds, and their hunting through sheep 
and hares, which they did in a very superior manner. 
He seldom, or ever, attempted to lift his hounds through 
sheep ; and from habit, and the great flocks the hounds 
were accustomed to, they carried the scent on most cor- 
rectly and expeditiously, much sooner than any lifting 
could accomplish. 

" Mr. Meynell was not fond of casting hounds : when 
once they were laid upon the line of scent, he left it to 
them — he only encouraged them to take pains, and kept 
aloof, so that the steam of the horses could not interfere 
with the scent. 

" When a fox was found in a gorse covert, very httle 
noise or encouragement was made ; and, when he went 
away, as soon as the hounds were apprised of it, they did 
not go headlong after, but commenced very quietly — 
settled and collected together gradually, mending their 
pace, and accumulating their force, as they went along ; 
completing what was emphatically termed — a terrible 
burst ! 

" When his hounds came to a check, every encourage- 
ment was given them to recover the scent, without the 
huntsman getting amongst them, or the whippers-in 
driving them about, which is the common practice of 
most packs. The hounds were halloo'd back to the 
place where they brought the scent, and encouraged to 


The System of the 

try round in their own way, which they generally did 
successfully ; avoiding the time lost in the mistaken 
practice of casting the hounds at the heels of the hunts- 

" When the hounds were cast, it was in two or three 
different lots, by Mr. Meynell, his huntsman, and whip- 
per-in ; and not driven together in a body like a flock of 
sheep. They were allowed to spread and use their own 
sagacity, at a very gentle pace ; and not hurried about in 
a blustering manner, but patiently. 

" It was Mr. Meynell's opinion, that a great noise, and 
scolding of hounds, made them wild : correcting them in 
a quiet way was the most judicious method. 

" Wliippers-in should turn hounds quietly ; and not 
call after them in a noisy, disagreeable manner. 

" When hounds are going to the cry, they should be 
encouraged in a pleasant way : not driven and rated, as 
if discord was a necessary ingredient in the sport and 
music of a fine cry of hounds. Whippers-in are too apt 
to think their own importance and consequence consists 
in shouting, hallooing, and unnecessary activity. When 
hounds can hear the cry, they get together sooner than 
any whipper-in can drive them. If any hound is con- 
ceited, and disinclined to go to the cry, he should be 
immediately drafted. 

" Should there be only one fox in cover, and two or 
three hounds get away with him whilst the body of the 
pack are hunting the line behind, some judicious sports- 
man should ride to them, and view halloo for the rest of 
the pack to join them. It is the most certain way to 
ensure the run, and the hounds will very speedily get 


celebrated Hugo Meynell, Esq. 

together, when properly treated. If there are many 
foxes in cover, and one should go away, and the hounds 
are running m various parts, you may, if a favourable 
opportunity presents itself, try to halloo the pack away ; 
but do not attempt it without such favourable circum- 
stance, as a good rummaging in cover will do the hounds 
service. When a fox dwells in cover, and will not go 
away, the best plan is to leave him, and not kill him ; 
another day he may afford a good run. 

*' Blood ivas a thing Mr. Meynell was more indifferent 
about than most owners of hounds. The wildest packs 
of hounds were known to kill the most foxes in cover, 
but very seldom shewed good runs over a country. 

" Hounds chopping foxes in cover, is more a vice than 
a proof of their being good cover hounds. Murdering 
foxes is a most absurd prodigality. Seasoned foxes are 
as necessary to sport as experienced hounds. 

" To obtain a good run, your hounds should not only 
have good abilities, but they should be experienced, and 
well acquainted with each other. To gviide a scent well 
over a country for a length of time, and through all the 
difficulties usually encountered, requires the best and 
most experienced abihties : a faulty hound, or injudicious 
rider, by one improper step, may defeat the most pro- 
mising run. 

" Gentlemen, and every person who makes hunting 
his pursuit, should learn to ride judiciously to hounds ; 
it is a contemplative amusement, and much good diver- 
sion might be promoted by a few regular precautions. 
The principal thing to attend to is, not to ride too near 
the hounds, and always as much as possible anticipate a 


Mr. Meynell's System. 

check ; by which means, the leading men will pull their 
horses up in time, and afford the hounds fair oppor- 
tunity to keep the line of scent unbroken : sheep, cattle, 
teams at plough, and arable land, are all causes of checks, 
-ffif Thoughtless sportsmen are apt to press too much 
on hounds, particularly down a road. Every one should 
consider, that every check operates against the hounds, 
and that scent is of a fleeting nature — soon lost — never 
again to be recovered. 

" Mr. Meynell's hounds had more good runs than any 
pack of his day : two very extraordinary ones happened 
of a very rare description : — one was a run of one hour 
and twenty minutes, without a check, and killed their 
fox : the other was two hours and fifty minutes, without 
a cast, and killed. The hounds, in the first run, kept 
well together, and only two horses performed it ; the 
rest of the field were unequal to its fleetness : the other 
run alluded to was performed by the whole of the pack ; 
and though all were up at the death, two or three slack- 
ened in their pace just at the last : one horse only went 
the whole of it. 

*' Mr. Meynell's natural taste led him to admire large 
hounds ; but, his experience convinced him that small 
ones were generally the stoutest, soundest, and in every 
respect the most executive. 

"Various are the attentions necessary to manage a 
pack of hounds, and quite sufficient to engage the occu- 
pation of an active man's mind. Should the master of 
the hounds have other important concerns to call his 
attention off, sensible and confidential agents and servants 
should be chosen in every department. 


The Subject of Blood considered. 

" Fox-hunting is manly and fine exercise, aftbrding 
health to the body, and food for a contemplative mind ; 
in no situation are the faculties of man more displayed. 
Fortitude, good sense, and collectiveness of mind, have 
a wide field for exercise ; and a sensible sportsman would 
be a respectable character in any situation of life. 

" The field is a most agreeable coffee-house, and there 
is more real society to be met with there than in any 
other situation of life : it links all classes together, from 
the peer to the peasant — it is the Englishman's pecuhar 
privilege — it is not to be found in any other part of the 
globe, but in England's true land of liberty — and may it 
flourish to the end of time ! " 

But to return — I have already stated that an opinion 
is generally entertained that blood is indispensable to a 
pack of fox hounds. — If we reason by analogy on the 
subject, we shall find that the stag hound is seldom al- 
lowed to taste blood, and yet he continues to pursue the 
chase with the utmost ardour ; the same remark will in 
some degree apply to the harrier, though not to the same 
extent ; the greyhound pursues the hare with headlong 
impetuosity, though he is never allowed to share the 
prize when he has obtained it ; but, if we extend this 
reasoning to the pointer, the setter, and the spaniel, we 
shall find that they are cautiously prevented from ever 
tasting blood — they are taught indeed never to expect 
it, and yet this certainly has not the effect of slackening 
their mettle, or rendei'ing them less eager in the pursuit. 
Even amongst fox hounds there are individuals to be 
foimd not inclined to devour the fox ; and I have seen 
excellent fox hounds, which, though tliey ran tlie fox in 


Considerations on the Necessity of 

tlie most gallant and determined manner imaginable, 
Avould, nevertheless, refuse to eat him, nor indeed could 
they ever be induced to swallow a morsel ! Young fox 
hounds frequently testify no great desire to eat the fox, 
though they may run into him with the utmost fury ; nor, 
in fact, would a fox, one hour after his death, be very 
eagerly devoured by old hoimds, accustomed to blood — 
they would perhaps refuse him altogether. Fox hounds 
are maddened with the pursuit — they are worked up to 
a pitch of fury ; and unless the fox is devoured before 
their anger is allowed to cool, they would, in all proba- 
bility, feel but little disposed for such a repast. 

Hence it might appear that the capture, and not the 
blood, of the object of pursuit is the main stimulus to 
that extraordinary exertion which we frequently see dis- 
played by hounds ; and that perhaps if fox hounds were 
left intirely to themselves, and had never been encouraged 
to devour their game, it is doubtful whether many of 
them ( if not the whole pack) would not be satisfied with 
killing him. I am aware that this would not be the case 
with stag hounds or harriers ; but it must be recollected 
that a fox is not a very enticing delicacy, like a deer or a 
hare, and can only be rendered a tempting morsel under 
an extraordinary degree of excitement — under, in fact, 
the circumstances which generally precede and attend 
his death. 

In support of this hypothesis, it may be further ob- 
served, that a pointer or any of those dogs that are used 
in the pursuit of winged game, however excellent they 
may previously have been, soon become vmeasy, unruly, 
and ultimately good for nothing, unless a reasonable 


Blood to a Pack of Fox Hounds. 

quantity of game be killed to them : — for instance, a 
pointer, which, in the hands of a good shot, is a capital 
dog, and performs his work in the best possible style, 
will soon manifest uneasiness and disappointment, if he 
happen to be taken out by an indifferent or bad marks- 
man: if tlie game fall not before him, he soon loses the 
inclination to pursue it, at least in a proper manner : and 
hence it would clearly appear that the capture of the ob- 
ject of pursuit is necessary to the excellence of the dog, 
though blood is by no means indispensable, since he ea- 
gerly pursues that which he can never expect to taste. 
Similar remarks are applicable to the greyhound ; and 
harriers, I am inclined to think, which seldom reach the 
game, will never be remarkable for their excellence. — 
The dog feels an indescribable pleasure in the gratifica- 
tion of his master — to accomplish this he exerts his 
powers to the utmost, and when he is conscious of having 
accomplished it, he may be fairly supposed to be satis- 

Fox hunters, however, in general, will have some dif- 
ficulty in reconciUng themselves to the idea of blood not 
being essential to a pack of fox hounds ; yet, from what 
has been stated, it is reasonable to conclude, that, though 
the death of the fox may be indispensable to the excel- 
lence of the hounds, devouring him afterwards is a cir- 
cinnstance not absolutely called for, and no further ne- 
cessary than merely giving a better and more complete 
finish to the business than could be otherwise accom- 

There is a decree of interest and animation about fox 


Enthusiasm of a Fox Chase. 

hunting which fox hunters only can well understand, 
and upon which Somervile thus expresses himself: — 

" Huntsman, prepare ! Ere yet the morning peep, 

Or stars retire from the first blush of day, 

With thy far-echoing voice alarm thy pack. 

And rouse thy bold compeers. Then to the copse, 

Thiek with entangling grass, or prickly furze, 

With silence, lead thy many-coloured hounds, 

In all their beauty's pride. See ! how they range, 

Dispers'd, how busily this way. and that, 

They cross, examining with curious nose 

Each likely haunt. Hark ! on the drag I hear 

Their doubtful notes, preluding to a cry 

More nobly full and swell'd with every mouth. 

As straggling armies, at the trumpet's voice, 

Press to their standard, hither all repair, 

And hurry through the woods; with hasty step 

Rustling, and full of hope ; now driven on heaps 

They push, they strive ; while from his kennel sneaks 

The conscious villain. See ! he skulks along. 

Sleek at the shepherd's cost, and plump with meals 

Puiloin'd : so thrive the wicked here below. 

Though high his brush he bear, though tipt with white 

It gaily shine ; yet ere the sun declin'd 

Recal the shades of night, the pamper'd rogue 

Shall rue his fate revers'd ; and at his heels 

Behold the just avenger, swift to seize 

His forfeit head, and thirsting for his blood. 

Heavens! what melodious strains ! how beat our hearts , 
Big with tumultuous joy ! the loaded gales 
Breathe harmony ; and as the tempest drives 
From wood to wood, through every dark recess 
The forest thunders, and the mountains shake. 
The chorus swells ; less various, and less sweet, 
The thrilling notes, when in those very groves, 
The feather'd choristers salute the spring. 
And every bush in concert joins ; or when 


The Fox Chase. 

The master's band, in modulated air, 
Bids the loud organ breathe, and all the powers 
Of music in one instrument combine. 
An universal minstrelsy. And now 
In vain each earth he tries, the doors are barr'd 
Impregnable, nor is the covert safe ; 
He pants for purer air ! Hark ! what loud shouts 
Re-echo tlirough the groves ! he breaks away. 
Shrill boms proclaim his flight. Each straggling hound 
Strains o'er tbc lawn to reach the distant pack. 
'Tis triumph all and joy. Now, my brave youths, 
Now give a loose to the clean generous steed ; 
Flourish the whip, nor spare the galling spur ; 
But, in the madness of delight, forget 
Your fears. Far o'er the rocky hills we range, 
And dangerous our course; but in the brave 
True courage never fails. In vain the stream 
In foaming eddies whirls ; in vain the ditch 
Wide gaping threatens death. The craggy steep, 
Where the poor dizzy shepherd crawls with care, 
And clings to every twig, gives us no pain ; 
But down we sweep, as stoops the fakon bold 
To pounce his prey. Then up th' opponent hill. 
By the swift motion flung, we mount aloft. 
What lengths we pass ! where will the wandering chase 
Lead us bewildered ! smooth as swallows skim 
The new-shorn mead, and far more swift, we fly. 
See my brave pack ; how to the head they press, 
Jostling in close array, then more diffuse 
Obliquely wheel, while from their opening mouths 
The voUied tli under breaks. Now far behind 
The hunter crew, wide-straggling o'er the plain ! 
The panting courser now with trembling nerves 
Begins to reel ; urg'd by the goring spur, 
Makes many a faint effort: he snorts, he foams. 
The big round drops run trickling down his sides, 
With sweat and blood distain'd. Look back and view 
The strange confusion of the vale below, 


The Fox Chase. 

Where sour vexation reigns; see }'on poor jade, 

In vain th' impatient rider frets and swears ; 

With galling spurs harrovps his mangled sides ; 

He can no more : his stiff unpliant limbs 

Rooted in earth, unmov'd and fix'd he stands, 

For every cruel curse returns a groan, 

And sobs, and faints, and dies. 

While these, with loosen'd reins and dangling heels, 

Hang on their reeling palfreys, that scarce bear 

Their weights : another in the treacherous bog 

T/ies floundering, half ingulf 'd. What biting thoughts 

Torment th' abandon'd crew ! Old age laments 

His vigour spent : the tall, plump, brawny youth 

Curses his cumberous bulk ; and envies now 

The short pygmaean race, he whilom kenn'd 

With pi'oud insulting leer. A chosen few 

Alone the sport enjoy, nor droop beneath 

Their pleasing toils. Here, huntsman, from this height 

Observe yon birds of prey : if I can judge, 

'Tis there the villain lurks : they hover round 

And claim him as their own. Was I not right? 

See ! there he creeps along ; his brush he drags, 

And sweeps the mire impure; from his wide jaws 

His tongue unmoisten'd hangs ; symptoms too sure 

Of sudden death. Ha ! yet he flies, nor yields 

To black despair. But one loose more, and all 

His wiles are vain. Hark ! through yon village now 

The rattling clamour rings. The barns, the cots, 

And leafless elms return the joyous sounds. 

Through every homestall, and through every yard. 

His midnight walks, panting, forlorn, he flies ; 

Through every hole he sneaks, through every jakes 

Plunging he wades besmear'd, and fondly hopes 

In a superior stench to lose his own : 

But, faithful to the track, th' unerring hounds 

With peals of echoing vengeance close pursue. 

And now distress'd, no sheltering covert near, 

Into tlie hen roost crpcj>s, whose walls witli gore 


The Huntsman should draw up the Wind. 

Distain'd attest his guilt. There, villain, there 
Expect thy fate deserv'd. And soon from thence 
The pack inquisitive, with clamour loud, 
Drag out their trembling prize ; and on his blood 
With greedy transport feast." — Somervile. 

I agree with Beckford that the huntsman should, 
generally speaking, draw quietly, and up the wind : the 
following are his observations on the subject: — "With 
regard to drawing quietly, that may depend on the kind 
of cover which he is drawing, and also on the season of 
the year. If your covers are small, or such from which 
a fox cannot break unseen, then noise can do no hurt ; if 
you draw at a late hour, and when there is no drag, then 
the more the cover is disturbed the better ; the more 
likely you are to find. Late in the season, the foxes 
are generally wild, particularly in covers that are often 
hunted. If you do not draw quietly, he will get off a 
long way before you : when you have any suspicion of 
this, send on a whipper-in to the opposite side of the 
cover, before you throw in your hounds. With regard 
to the drawing up the wind, that is much more material. 
You never fail to give the wind to a pointer or a setter 
— why not to a hound ? — Besides the fox, if you draw 
up the wind, does not hear you coming ; and your hounds, 
by this means, are never out of your hearing ; moreover, 
if he turns down the wind, as most probably he will, it 
lets them all in." 

Speaking of gentlemen who ride after hounds, the 
same writer observes, that few of them are sportsmen. 
" Few gentlemen, (says he) will take any pains, few of 
them will stop a hound, though he should run riot close 



01 Riding to Hounds. 

by the side of them, or will place themselves for a mo- 
ment, though it be to halloo a fox ; it is true, they will 
not fail to halloo if he comes in their way, and they will 
do the same to as many foxes as they see. Some will 
encourage hounds which they do not know ; it is a great 
fault : were every gentleman who follows hounds to fancy 
himself a huntsman, what noise, what confusion, would 
ensue ! I consider many of them as gentlemen riding out, 
knd I am never so well pleased as when I see them riding 
home again. You may perhaps have thought that I 
wished them all to be huntsmen. Most certainly not ; 
but the more assistance a huntsman has, the better, in 
all probability, his hounds will be. Good sense, and a 
little observation, will soon prevent such people from 
doing amiss ; and I hold it as almost an invariable rule in 
hunting, that those who do not know how to do good, 
are always liable to do harm : there is scarcely an instant 
during the whole chase, when a sportsman ought not to 
be in one particular place : and I will venture to say, that 
if he is not tliere^ he might as well be in his bed." Not- 
withstanding the above assertion that the more assistance 
a huntsman receives the better, I am of opinion that the 
huntsman should be as little interfered with as possible. 
I have generally observed, that those gentlemen who are 
the most busy and forward in giving advice seldom un- 
derstand the business sufficiently, to render it acceptable 
or pleasing. Nothing can be more obvious than the 
situation in which gentlemen should place themselves 
during the run, as no person but the huntsman and his 
assistants should be within a certain space of the hounds : 
it is true, when the scent is good, those who are not well 


Of Hounds running well up to their Vox. 

mounted, will not easily keep their proper places with 
modern fox hoimds ; yet, by falling behind, they only 
lose the delight of the chase, and cannot possibly do any 
injury to the hunting of the hounds. However, it very 
frequently happens, when a fox is viewed away, that 
impetuous and thoughtless sportsmen are apt to ride 
after him instead of following the hounds : nothing can 
be more vexatious to a good sportsman than to see the 
scent thus ridden over, the hounds prevented from 
settling to it, and the run frequently spoiled. On bad 
scenting days, fonvard sportsmen are a great plague to 
the huntsman, and are highly detrimental to the sport 
by riding too close upon and pressing the hounds. When 
the scent is good, and the hounds have got fairly away, 
there is little or nothing to fear from the sportsmen just 
alluded to, as it is then seldom in their power to do any 
serious mischief. 

If the scent is good, hounds cannot well be pressed on 
too much ; but this is the huntsman's duty, and not the 
business of the gentlemen who follow the hounds. If 
hounds can run well up to their fox at the commence- 
ment or in the early part of the chase, there is every 
reason to anticipate a satisfactory conclusion ; but if the 
fox is suffered to get far a-head, he will regulate his 
pace, according to circumstances, and will most likely 
beat the hounds. A fox should, if possible, be blown at 
first, when his death is almost sure to follow. A fox, 
no doubt, like the hounds, after some time, gets second 
wind, when his pace becomes well regulated and steady ; 
if, at this period, he be far before the hounds, the business 



style of Fox Hounds running. 

will be much protracted, and will most likely end in the 
loss of the fox. 

If, however, hounds should be pressed when the scent 
is good, they should not be hurried when it is bad. 
"Most fox-hunters wish to see their hounds run in a good 
style. I confess I am myself one of those. I hate to see 
a string of them, nor can I bear to see them creep where 
they can leap. It is the dash of the fox hound which 
distinguishes Mm as truly as the motto of William of 
Wickham distinguishes us. A pack of harriers, if they 
have time, will kill a fox ; but I defy them to kill him in 
the style in which a fox ought to be killed ; they must 
hunt him down. If you are to tire him out, you must 
expect to be tired yourself also : I never wish a chase 
to be less than one hour, or to exceed two : it is suffi- 
ciently long, if properly followed." Hounds, after five 
or six seasons running, frequently do more harm than 
good : too many old hounds should not be kept, if the 
pack are expected to run well together ; and every hound 
that is off the scent, or behind the rest, should not fail 
to come to a halloo. 

Changing foxes is a very unpleasant occurrence ; nor 
is it possible always to guard against it. " Could a fox 
hound (says Beckford) distinguish a hunted fox, as the 
deer hound does the deer that is blown, fox-hunting 
would then be perfect." On this subject Beckford does 
not seem to be well infomied : he does not seem to be 
aware that this distinction arises rather fi-om the capacity 
of the hound than the scent of the objects of pursuit ; 
since there is every reason to believe that the scent of 
the fox is stronger and more obvious than that of the 


Of the Olfactory Organs of the Fox Hound. 

deer. The deer hounds formerly in use were nearly 
alhed to the old Talbot ; the}' possessed exquisite olfac- 
tory organs, and were thus enabled to distinguish and 
pursue the very scent upon which they were first laid ; 
but some of the modern deer hounds, those of the Earl 
of Derby, for instance, would not be able to do it, as 
they have not the requisite capacity — they are high-bred 
fleet hounds, (fox hounds in appearance) and could no 
more distinguish the hunted deer, were another to cross 
them, than the fox hound is able to recognize the scent 
of a fresh fox : while it may be justly observed, that if 
the fox hound possessed similar olfactory organs to those 
which distinguished the stag hound of old, he would be 
able to distinguish a fresh fox from the hunted fox. 
Could the olfactory organs of the Talbot, or something 
like them, be united with the speed of the modern fox 
hoimd, fox-hunting, to use the words of Beckford, 
" would then be perfect." 

When hounds come to a check, there should be as 
little noise as possible. At this time whippers-in are 
frequently coming on with the tail hounds. Tliey should 
never halloo to them when the liounds are at fault ; the 
least thing is injurious at such a time ; but a halloo more 
than any other. When hounds come to a check, gen- 
tlemen should stop their horses some distance behind ; 
they should be careful not to ride over the scent, nor 
should they ever meet a hound in the face, unless with a 
design to stop hun. If a gentleman at any time happen 
to be before the hounds, he should turn his horse's head 
the way they are going, get out of the way, and let them 
pass. In dry weather foxes will sometimes run the roads : 


Of Fox Hoiincis coining to a Fault. 

if gentlemen, at such a time, ride close upon the hounds, 
they may drive them miles without any scent ; as fox 
hounds are seldom inclined to stop whilst horses are 
close upon them. 

The first moment hoinids come to a fault is a critical 
one. Gentlemen should then be very attentive. Those 
who look forward may possibly see the fox ; or the move- 
ments of crows, magpies, or sheep may afford some 
tidings of him. A halloo may be heard, and nothing 
that can give any intelhgence at such a time as this, 
should be neglected : but caution is requisite in going to 
a halloo. " The halloo itself must in a great measure 
direct you ; and though it affords no certain rule, you 
may frequently guess by it, whether it is to be depended 
on or not. At the sowing time, when boys are bird 
keeping, if you are not very much on your guard, their 
halloo will sometimes deceive you. It is best, when you 
are in doubt, to send on a whipper-in to know ; the worst 
then that can befal you is the loss of a little time; 
whereas, if you gallop away with the hounds to the halloo, 
and are obliged to return, it is a chance if they try for 
the scent afterwards : on the other hand, if you are 
certain of the halloo, and intend going to it, then the 
sooner you get to it the better. Huntsmen who are slow 
at getting to a halloo are void of common sense. They 
frequently commit ailbther fault by being in too great a 
hurry when they get there. It is hardly credible how 
much our eagerness is apt, at such a time, to mislead 
our judgment : for instance, when we get to the halloo, 
the first questions are naturally enough — Did you see 
the fox ? — which way did he go ? The man points with 


Of Halloos and Tired Foxes. 

his finger perhaps, and then away you all ride as fast as 
you can ; and in such a hurry, that not one will stay to 
hear the answer which you were all so desirous of 
knowing : the general consequence of which is, you 
mistake the place, and are obliged to return to the man 
for better information. Depend upon it the less hurry 
you are in on this occasion, the less time you lose ; and 
wherever the fox was seen for a certainty, whether near 
or distant, that will not only be the surest, but also the 
best, place to take the scent. 

" Once a man hallooed us back a mile (says Beckford) 
only to tell us that we were right before ; and we lost 
the fox by it." 

Hounds ought not to be cast as long as they are able 
to hunt ; and though it is a good maxim for a fox-himter 
to suppose that a hunted fox never stops, that he may 
be active and lose no time, yet tired foxes must stop 
somewhere ; and I once recollect observing one lying on 
a dunghill, in a farm yard, amongst the pigs. He had 
been run for more than one hour and a half, and the 
hounds came in full cry up to a farm yard, when they 
could no longer make out the scent. A gentleman posi- 
tively declared that he saw the fox go through the stack 
yard and make off, and was anxious that the huntsman 
should proceed in that direction : the latter, however, 
appeared very doubtful of the correctness of this infor- 
mation, and after casting his hounds round the buildings, 
became convinced that renard had not gone forward. 
On examining the farm yard, he was found to have 
placed himself in the midst of the pigs on the dunghill, 
where he lay completely exhausted. A tired fox ought 


Of Cold Hunting, coming to a Check, &c. 

not easily to be given up, since he has been known some- 
times to lie down in cart ruts, and to get up very unex- 
pectedly in the midst of the hounds. 

When hounds are at cold hunting with a bad scent, 
a whipper-in may be sent forward : if he can see the fox, 
a little mobbing, as Beckford says, at such a time as 
this, may be reasonably allowed. When hounds come 
to a check on a high road, by the fox being headed back, 
if, in that case the hounds are suffered to try back, it 
gives them the best chance of hitting off the scent again. 

When hounds are running in cover, the sportsmen 
should be as quiet as possible. If renard be near his 
end — if he be running short, and the hounds are catching 
at him, not a word should be spoken : this is a difficult 
time for hounds, as the fox is continually turning, and 
will sometimes lie down, and let them pass him. A fox 
is more likely to be lost, when first found, and when he 
is sinking, than at any other period : at these times, he 
will frequently run short, and the eagerness of the hounds 
is apt to carry them beyond the scent. 

In regard to halloos, it may be observed that those 
who have good voices are too apt to use them. When 
a fox is hallooed, those who understand the business, 
and get forward, may halloo him again ; yet they should 
recollect that, if the hounds go the contrary way, and do 
not seem to come on upon the line of him, to halloo no 
more, as it is tolerably evident he has not seen the hunted 
fox, though most persons are willing to persuade them- 
selves that whatever fox they see must be the hunted fox 
and no other. Halloos of encouragement to the leading 
liounds, if injudiciously given, are highly injurious; hut 


Hounds should not be too much used to Halloos. 

such halloos as get on the tail hounds, or serve to keep 
the hounds together, are always useful. View halloos 
are prejudicial — in a strong cover, full of foxes, for 
instance — if, under such circumstances, view halloos are 
frequently given, hounds will not take the requisite 
trouble in hunting. 

While hounds are running with a good scent, they 
should never be taken off to go to a halloo ; but, under 
other circumstances, when the fox, for instance, is a great 
distance ahead, such a step may be very advisable. 
When the fox persists in running his foil, the tail hounds 
may be thrown in at head ; as such foxes are difficult to 
kill ; and it frequently happens that, the longer you hunt 
after such foxes, the further you are behind them. Such 
a manoeuvre will most likely put renard out of his pace, 
or off his foil ; and whenever it is resorted to, the 
whipper-in should stop the pack from hunting after, and 
get forward with them to the huntsman. 

If hounds, however, are often used to halloos, they 
will expect them, and may trust to their ears and eyes in 
preference to their noses. If they are often taken from 
the scent, it teaches them to shuffle, and will probably 
make them slack in cover : halloos, therefore, should be 
used with due circumspection, and never employed 
vmnecessarily. Whilst hounds can get well on with the 
scent, it is not advisable to take them off from it ; but 
when they are stopped for want of it, in such case it 
cannot be wrong to assist them as much as possible. 

Hounds should not be suffered to hunt after other 
hounds that are gone on with the scent, since they are 
not likely to get up with a worse scent. Besides, it makes 


Of Fox Hounds being left to themselves. 

them tie on the scent, to run dog, and destroys that most 
essential quality in the fox hoimd, an eagerness to get 
forward. If the head hounds happen to get away from 
the huntsman, he should sink the wind with the rest of 
the pack, in order to reach the leading hounds as soon 
as possible : when, however, a single hound is gone on 
with the scent, it is best to send forward a whipper-in to 
stop him ; were the pack to be taken off the scent to get 
to him, and he should no longer have any scent when 
they reach him, it is very hkely the fox would be lost by it. 
Skirting is a bad quality either in men or dogs. Those 
sportsmen who skirt to save their horses or themselves, 
are very liable to head the fox. " I cannot (says Beck- 
ford) subscribe to the doctrine that a pack of fox hounds, 
if left to themselves, would never lose a fox ;" yet it is 
probable that if fox hounds were left to themselves, they 
would miss few foxes. There are, in every pack, line 
himting hounds that will not come on but with the scent — 
they perseveringly proceed on the line of the fox ; the 
brilliant running hounds are perfectly aware of this cir- 
cumstance, as when their impetuosity has hurried them 
beyond the scent, they lean as naturally as possible to 
the line hunting hounds, and thus recover it. If, how- 
ever, foxes would seldom be missed by hounds, if left to 
themselves, the run would generally be tedious, and the 
foxes would be killed in a style inconsistent with the 
spu'it of the diversion. When the scent is good, fox 
hounds require but little assistance from the huntsman, 
nor are the most eager horsemen able to accomplish 
much mischief; but when the atmosphere is unfavour- 
able, hounds, by imprudent sportsmen, are often hurried 


Change of Country injurious to Hounds. 

beyond the scent ; while the steam, issuing in vokimes 
from the horses, mixed with the hounds, must be highly 
prejudicial to the sport. 

If covers are much disturbed, foxes will be in a state 
of alarm, and will break as soon as they hear a hound, 
and sometimes before. Such foxes seldom return ; and 
if you can get well away with one, a good run will most 
likely follow. On such occasions a whipper-in should be 
posted to halloo one away, upon which the hoimds 
should be immediately laid. 

Hounds should be as little used to change of country 
as possible. Should they change from a good scenting 
country to a bad one, they will most likely be some time 
without killing a fox. Hounds have a decided advantage 
in a country with which they are familiar : they know 
where to find their game ; and they will pursue more 
eagerly when it is found. 

Beckford says, " no good country should be hunted 
after February ; nor should there be any hunting at all 
after March. Spring hunting is sad destruction of foxes : 
in one week you may destroy as many as would have 
shewn you sport during a whole season. We killed a 
bitch fox one morning, with seven young ones, which 
were all alive : I can assure you we missed them very 
much the next year, and had many blank days, which 
we need not have had, but through our own fault. If 
you should hunt late in the season, you should at least 
leave your terriers behind you." Fox-hunting, however, 
is seldom given up till the middle or latter end of Ajn-il, 
and in some places it is customary to kill a May fox. 
With regard to the bitch fox just mentioned, had she 


Injurious Consequences of late Hunting. 

been killed at an early period of the season, it would have 
produced precisely the same effect, though the mischief 
would have been less obvious. When bitch foxes are 
heavy (in a state of gestation) they are very ill calculated 
to stand up before hounds : however, the death of such 
may, with proper management, be generally avoided. 
But I am no advocate for late hunting ; nor indeed are 
hounds able to hunt in hot weather, neither are horses 
able to follow them. In 1825, the month of April, or at 
least the greater part of it, was remarkably warm: I 
recollect, on this occasion, one of the best packs in Eng- 
land (Sir Harry Mainwaring's) being unable to hunt. I 
would never have a single fox unnecessarily destroyed. 
Huntsmen are anxious for a great display of foxes' 
heads — to kill so many brace — but they should never be 
suffered to commit miu'der. 

" I told you, (says Beckford) I believe, at the begin- 
ning of our correspondence, that I disliked bag foxes ; 
I shall now tell you what my objections to them are : — 
the scent of them is different from that of other foxes : 
it is too good, and makes hounds idle ; besides, in the 
manner in which they are generally turned out, it makes 
hounds very wild. They seldom fail to know what you 
are going about before you begin, and if often used to hunt 
bag foxes, will become riotous enough to run any thing. 
A fox that has been confined long in a small place, and 
carried out afterwards many miles perhaps, in a sack, 
his own ordure hanging about him, must needs stink 
extravagantly. You are also to add to this account, 
that he most probably is weakened for want of his natural 
food and usual exercise ; his spirit broken by despair. 


Of Bag Foxes and Breeding Cubs. 

and his limbs stiffened by confinement : he then is turned 
out in open ground, without any point to go to. He 
runs down the wind, it is true ; but he is so much at a 
loss all the while, that he loses a deal of time in not 
knowing what to do ; while the hounds, who have no 
occasion to hunt, pursue as closely as if they were tied 
to him. If, notwithstanding these objections, you still 
choose to turn one out, turn him into a small cover, give 
him what time you judge necessary, and lay on your 
hovmds as quietly as you can ; and^ if it be possible, let 
them think they find him. If you tiu'n out a fox for 
])lood, I should, in that case, prefer the turning him into 
a large cover, first drawing it well, to prevent a change. 
The hounds should then find themselves ; and the sooner 
he is killed the better. Fifteen or twenty minutes is as 
long as I should ever wish a bag fox to run, that is de- 
signed for blood : the hounds should then go home. 

" Bag foxes always run down the wind : such sports- 
men, therefore, as choose to turn them out, may at the 
same time choose what country they shall run. Foxes 
that are found, do not follow this rule invariably. Strong 
earths and large covers are great inducements to them, 
and it is no inconsiderable wind that will keep them from 

" If you breed up cubs, you will find a fox court neces- 
sary : they should be kept there till they are large enough 
to take care of themselves. It ought to be open at the 
top and walled in. I need not tell you that it must be 
every way well secured, and particularly the floor of it, 
which must be either bricked or paved. A few boards 
fitted to the corners will also be of use to shelter and to 


Of Breeding and Rearing Cubs. 

hide them. Foxes ought to be kept very clean, and have 
plenty of fresh water : birds and rabbits are their best 
food : horse flesh might give them the mange ; for they 
are subject to this disorder. 

'^ I have kept foxes too long : I also have turned them 
out too young. The safest way, I believe, will be to 
avoid either extreme. When cubs are bred in an earth 
near you, if you add two or three to the number, it is 
not improbable that the old fox will take care of them. 
Of this you may be certain, that if they live they will be 
good foxes ; for the others will show them the country. 
Those which you turn into an earth should be regularly 
fed. If they are once neglected, it is probable they will 
forsake the place, wander away, and die for want of food. 
When the cubs leave the earth (which they may soon do) 
your gamekeeper should throw food for them in parts 
of the cover where it may be most easy for them to find 
it ; and when he knows their haunt, he should continue 
to feed them there. Nothing destroys so much the 
breed of foxes, as buying them to turn out ; unless care 
is taken of them afterwards. 

" Your country being extensive, probably it may not 
be all equally good : it may be worth your while, there- 
fore, to remove some of the cubs from one part of it into 
the other : it is what I frequently do myself, and find it 
answer. A fox court, therefore, is of great use : it 
should be airy, or I would not advise you to keep them 
long in it. I turned out one year ten brace of cubs, 
most of which, by being kept till they were tainted before 
they were turned out, were found dead in the covers, 
with scarce any hair upon them : whilst a brace, which 


Of Diseased or Mangy Cubs. 

had made their escape by making a hole in the sack in 
which they Mere brought, lived, and showed excellent 
sport. If the cubs are large, you may turn them out 
immediately : — a large earth will be the best for that pur- 
pose, where they shovdd l)e regularly fed with rabbits, 
birds, or sheep's henges, whichever you can most con- 
veniently get. I believe, when a fox is once tainted, he 
never recovers it. The weather being remarkably hot, 
those that I kept irrmy fox court (which at that time 
was a very close one) all died, one after the other, of the 
same disorder. 

" Where rabbits are plentiful, iiature will soon teach 
them how to catch the young ones ; and, till that period 
of abundance arrives, it may be necessary to provide 
food for them. Where game is scarce, wet weather will 
be most favourable to them : they can then live on bee- 
tles, chaffers, worms, &c. which they will find great 
plenty of. I think the morning is the best time to turn 
them out : if turned out in the evening, they will be more 
likely to r;imble ; but if turned out early, and fed on the 
earth, I think there is little doubt of their remaining 
there. I also recommend to you to turn them into large 
covers and strong earths: out of small earths they are 
more liable to be stolen, and from small covers are more 
likely to wander away. Your gamekeepers, at this time 
of the year, having little else to do, may feed and take 
care of them. When you stop any of these earths, re- 
member to have them opened again, as I have reason to 
think I lost some young foxes one year by not doing it. 
For your own satisfaction, put a private mark on every 
fox which you turn out, tbat you may know him again. 



Purchasing Foxes condemned. 

Your cvibs, though they may get off from the covers 
where they were bred, when hunted, will seldom fail to 
return to them. 

" Gentlemen who buy foxes do great injury to fox- 
hunting : they encourage the robbing of neighbouring 
hunts ; in which case, without doubt, the receiver is as 
bad as the thief. It is the interest of every fox-hunter 
to be cautious how he behaves in this particular: indeed, 
I believe most gentlemen are so ; %nd it may be easy to 
retaliate on such as are not. I am told, that in some 
hunts it is the constant employment of one person to 
watch the earths at the breeding time, to prevent the 
cubs from being stolen. Furze covers cannot be too 
much encouraged, for that reason ; for there they are 
safe. They have also other advantages attending them : 
they are certain places to find in : foxes cannot break 
from them unseen ; nor are you so liable to change as in 
other covers. 

" With respect to the digging of foxes that you run 
to ground, — what I myself have observed in that busi- 
ness I will endeavour to recollect. My people usually, 
I think, follow the hole, except when the earth is large, 
and the terriers have fixe'd the fox in an angle of it ; for 
they then find it a more expeditious method to sink a 
pit as near to him as they can. You should always keep 
a terrier in at the fox ; for if you do not, he not only may 
move, but also, in loose ground, may dig himself further 
in. In digging, you should keep room enough ; and 
care should be taken not to throw the earth whence you 
may have to move it again. In following the hole, the 
surest way not to lose it is to keep below it. — When 


Of Digging Foxes. 

your hounds are in v\ ant of blood, stop all the holes, lest 
the fox should bolt out unseen. It causes no small eon- 
fusion when this happens. The hounds are dispersed 
about, and asleep in different places : the horses are 
often at a considerable distance ; and many a fox, by 
taking advantage of this favoiu'able moment, has saved 
his life. 

" If hounds are in want of blood, and they have had 
a long run, it is the best way, without doubt, to kill the 
fox upon the earth ; but if they have not run long, if 
the fox is easy to be digged, and the cover is such a one 
as they are not likely to change in, it does the hounds 
more good to turn him out upon the earth, and let 
them work for him. It is the blood that will dp them 
most good, and may be serviceable to the hounds, to 
the horses, and to yourself. Digging a fox is cold 
work, and may i*equire a gallop afterwards to warm you 
all again. Before you do this, if there are any other 
earths in the cover, they should be stopped, lest the 
fox should go to ground again. 

" Let your huntsman try all around, and let him be 
perfectly satisfied that the fox is not gone on, before you 
try an earth : for want of this precaution, I dug three 
hours to a terrier that lay all the time at a rabbit : there 
was another circumstance which I am not likely to forget, 
— ' that I had twenty miles to ride home afterwards.' 
A fox sometimes runs over an earth, and does not go 
into it : he sometimes goes in, and does not stay : he 
may find it too hot, or may not like the company he 
meets with there. 1 make no doubt that he has good 


Mciliod of Drawing a Fox. 

reasons for every tiling he does, though we are not 
always acquainted with them. 

" Huntsmen, when they get near the fox, will some- 
times put a hound in to draw him. This is, however, a 
cruel operation, and seldom answers any other purpose 
than to occasion the dog a bad bite, the fox's head gene- 
rally being towards him ; besides, a few minutes digging 
will make it unnecessary. If you let the fox first seize 
your whip, the hound will draw him more readily. 

" You should not encourage badgers in your woods : 
they make strong earths, which will be expensive and 
troublesome to you to stop, or fatal to your sport if 
you do not. You, without doubt, remember an old 
Oxford toast : 

" Hounds stouf, and horses healthy, 
Earths welt slopj/d, and foxes plenty. 

All certainly very desirable to a fox-hunter; yet I 
apprehend the earths stopped to be the most necessary ; 
for the others, without that, would be useless. Besides, 
I am not certain that earths are the safest places for 
foxes to breed in ; for frequently, when poachers cannot 
dig them, they will catch the young foxes in trenches, 
dug at the mouth of the hole, which I believe they call 
timning them. A few large earths near to your house 
are certainly desirable, as they will draw the foxes thither, 
and, after a long day, will sometimes bring you home. 

" If foxes are bred in an earth which you think unsafe, 
yovi had better stink them out : that, or indeed any dis- 
turbance at the mouth of the hole, Avill make the old one 
carry them off to another place. 


OfTcrriers best suited lor l'"ox Huntiii;:. 

" In open countries, foxes, when they are much dis- 
turbed, will lie at earth. If you have difficulty in finding, 
stinking the earths will sometimes produce them again. 
The method which I use to stink an earth is as follows : — 
Three pounds of sulphur and one pound of assafoetida 
are boiled up together ; matches are then made of brown 
paper, and lighted in the holes, which are afterwards 
stopped very close. Earths that are not used by badgers 
may be stopped early, which will answer the same pur- 
pose ; but where badgers frequent it would be useless, 
as they would open them again. 

" Badgers may be caught alive in sacks, placed at the 
mouth of the hole : setting traps for them would be 
dangerous, as you might catch your foxes also. They 
may be caught by stinking them out of a great earth, 
and afterwards following them to a smaller one, and 
digging them. 

"lour country requires a good terrier. I should 
prefer the black or white terrier : some there are so like 
a fox, that awkward people frequently mistake one for 
the other. If you like terriers to run with your pack, 
large ones, at times, are useful ; but in an earth they do 
but little good, as they cannot always get up to the fox. 
You had better not enter a young terrier at a badger : 
young terriers have not the art of shifting like old ones ; 
and, if they are good for any thing, most probably will 
go up boldly to him at once, and get themselves most 
terribly bitten : for this reason, you should enter them 
at young foxes when you can. 

" Besides the digging of foxes, by which method many 
young ones are taken and old ones destroyed, traps, &c. 

N li 


Fox Hunting superior to all other Diversions. 

too often are fatal to tliem. Farmers, for their lambs 
(which, by the bye, few foxes ever kill), gentlemen for 
their game, and old women for their poultry, are their 
inveterate enemies. 

" Fox-hunting, an acquaintance of mine says, is only 
followed because you can ride hard, and do less harm in 
that than in any other hunting. There may be some 
truth in the observation; but to such as love the riding- 
part only of hunting, would not a trail scent be much 
more suitable ? Gentlemen who hunt for the sake of a 
ride, who are indifferent about the hounds, and know 
little of the business, if they do no harm, it is to the full 
as much as we have reason to expect from them ; while 
those of a contrary description do good, and have much 
greater pleasure. Such as are acquainted with the 
hounds, and can at tunes assist them, find the sport 
more interesting, and frequently have the satisfaction to 
think that they themselves contribute to the success of 
the day. My spirits are always good after good sport in 
hunting ; nor is the rest of the day ever disagreeable to 
me afterwards. What are other sports compared with 
this, which is all enthusiasm ! Fishing is, in my opinion, 
a dull diversion ; shooting, though it admits of a com- 
panion, does not allow of many : both therefore may be 
considered as selfish and solitary amusements compared 
with hunting ; to which as many as please are welcome. 
The one might teach patience to a philosopher ; and the 
other, though it occasions great fatigue to the body, 
seldom affords much occupation to the mind. Whereas, 
fox-hunting is a kind of warfare ; its uncertainties, its 
fiitigues, its difficulties, and its dangers, rendering it 
interesting above all other diversions." 


Of Hare Hunting. 

It has of late been much the fashion for gentlemen to 
perform the office of huntsman to their own pack : I see 
no objection to such a system, if they will take the 
necessary trouble for that })urpose, which I am inclined 
to think is not always the case. 


Of Hare Hunting. — The Opinion of a Sportsman of 
the last Century upon this Subject. — The Hounds best 
calculated for Hare Hunting. — Of the Huntsman 
and Whipjier-iti to a Pack of Harriers. — Hare 
Finders. — The Doubles of the Hare. — Warren 
Hares. — Pedestrian Sportsmen. — Of Music and 

From what has been said in the preceding pages of 
this work, it will easily be perceived that fox-hunting 
stands pre-eminent in my estimation ; however, there are 
those who entertain a different opinion, and prefer the 
chase of the hare to the pursuit of the fox : a writer, 
known by the denomination of the " Country Scjuire," 
who published his notions on the subject of hunting in 
the year 11 AS, tlni.s expresses himself:- 


An old Sportsman's Opinion 

" There is certainly something noble and heroic in 
hunting the wild boar, the tiger, and the lion ; but we 
inhabit an island wherein art and activity are more 
requisite to the huntsman than strength of body, and 
where safety must compensate for the want of glory. 

" The principal games of Great Britain are the deer, 
the fox, the hare, the otter, the badger, and martin ; 
though the three last of these would hardly deserve the 
honour of being hunted, were they not in season in the 
spring of the year, when the poor hare ought to be in 
peace to mviltiply her species, and were not our young 
gentlemen contented to play at a small game rather than 
stand idle. 

"There are authors before me on this subject, who 
have with accurate judgment and great learning described 
the pursuit after each of the animals above mentioned, 
and been so particular as to lay down at large the terms 
of art, the ways of finding, recovering, and taking each 
distinct species ; as well as the kinds and marks of the 
dogs proper to be chosen for the different games ; to 
such therefore I refer my readers, it being my design to 
repeat very little of other men's labours, and not to 
enlarge on topics that every green coat officer under- 
stands, or at least pretends to do it, better than myself. 

*' The stag, I confess, is a noble prize ; and as the taking 
it requires a large pack of dogs, the very best of horses, 
and a great expence, to the nobility and men of noble 
estates I have long since resigned it. The pursuit after 
the fox is also violent, and fit rather for those youthful 
heroes who glory in breaking the hearts of their horses, 
and venturinff their own necks. The fliffht of these two 


of Hare Hunting. 

animals is swift, and (though they make some few heads 
and turnings) most commonly in straight lines towards a 
place of refuge at some distance. The scent they leave 
is generally so high, that the pack (though ever so w'ell 
matched) is forced to folloAV after two or three strong- 
winded leaders in a straggling yelping string, and the 
horsemen are cast, though ever so well mounted: by 
this means the music is broken, the art of the huntsman 
of little use, and the pleasure of those who designed to 
be spectators, dwindles into enquiries — which way went 
the dogs ? However, as these games afford an oppor- 
tunity to our generous youth to shew their courage, to 
boast of the performance of themselves and their horses, 
and to excel one another in feats of activity ; as the pre- 
servation of lambs or geese is an act of charity to the 
honest farmer ; and as a venison pasty is a savoury orna- 
ment to my lady's table, I would by no means depreciate 
the triumphs obtained by our gallant Nimrods in the 
conquest of such beasts. 

" Yet I hope for pardon from my more sprightly 
brethren, if I give my vote for the innocent hare above 
all other game. The transports of every mortal breast 
at the sight of that little quadruped is no less amazing 
than unaccountable, and has often made me inclined to 
imagine she has some^hidden mechanical attractive power 
over man as well as beast : whatever it be, it ought to be 
a constant motive of gratitude to the indulgent Creator, 
that has furnished us with this physic, so delicious to 
the taste, as well as salutary in effect. Let the philo- 
sopher, the grave Stoic himself, be present at the tracing 
and unravelling the morning walk, and see this subtle 


The Doubles, &c. of the Hare. 

absconding creature suddenly starting in view of the 
whole cry, and he shall feel a passion that all his affected 
apathy cannot cover, that all his most lucky discoveries 
could never equal ! Let the most morose and incredu- 
lous sceptic suffer himself to be persuaded to ride the 
chase, or but to stand on an eminence and observe the 
perplexing shifts and wiles of the flyer and the pursuers, 
and he must be convinced that God's providence is over 
all his works, that the minutest and vilest part of the 
creation have been the care and contrivance of infinite 
wisdom. The swiftness and subtilty of this incom- 
parable creature demonstrate that she was made to give 
us pleasure, with purpose to tempt us into the wholesome 
fields : the doubles and indentures she is perpetually 
making, argues a design in their great Creator that every 
hound should come in to bear a part of the chorus — that 
each should have an opportunity of shewing his acute- 
ness and policy in the pursuit ; and the tours and rings 
she naturally traverses and repeats over the same ground, 
gives an advantage to every one of the company to enjoy 
their share, even old men and maidens. 

** The chase after the fox or stag is violent, and little 
more than riding and running ; but the hare displays the 
very art of hunting — she affords a pleasure worthy of a 
philosopher— a curiosity that may justly raise the admi- 
ration of the wisest statesman, physician, or divine. Let 
the most learned and inquisitive naturalist dissect the 
carcase of this feeble animal, let him carefully trace every 
sinew and muscle, let him note the smallness of her head 
and neck, the fullness and prominency of her eyes, the 
leanness of her shoulders, the depth of her chest, the 


Every Hare has her particular Play. 

largeness of her heart and lungs, the strength of her 
joints, the hardness of her little bones, the firm braces 
of her back, the slenderness of her belly, the portable 
shape of her paps or udders, the measure of her ears, 
the firmness of her gaskins, the superior length of her 
hinder legs, the obscurity of her colour, and the inimi- 
table contexture of her feet ; and let him then declare 
the causes and ends of this wonderful formation; let 
him dare to say she could have been formed better in 
any one part to qualify her for lying hid in her form, for 
nimbleness of flight, for holding out against her foes, or 
for giving pleasure to man. 

" We must never forget that every hare (as we say of 
fencers) has her particular play ; that, however, that 
play is occasionally changed, according to the variation 
of wind and weather, the weight of the air, the nature of 
the ground, and the degree of eagerness with which she 
is pursued. Nor are we to be unmindful of the numerous 
accidents she may meet in her way, to turn her out of 
her course, to cover her flight, to quicken her speed, or 
to furnish her with an opportunity for new devices. I 
say, it is not enough to have a general knowledge of 
these things before the game is started ; but in the heat 
of action (when we are most tempted to be in raptures, 
with the sound of the horns, the melody of the cry, and 
the expectation of success) we must carry them in our 
heads ; every step we make we must calmly observe the 
alterations of the soil, the position of the wind, the time 
of the year ; and no less take notice with what speed she 
is driven — how far she is before — to what place she 
tends — whether she is likely to keep on forward, or to 


Individual Character of the Hounds. 

turn short behind — whether she has not been met by 
passengers, frighted by curs, intercepted by sheep — 
whether an approaching storm, a I'ising wind, a sudden 
blast of the sun, the going off of a frost, the repetition 
of foiled ground, the decay of her own strength, or any 
other probable turn of affairs, has not abated or altered 
the scent. There are other things still no less necessary 
to be remembered than the former : as, the particular 
quality and character of each dog — whether the present 
leaders are not apt to overrun it — which are most in- 
clined to stand on the double — which are to be depended 
upon in the highway, on the ploughed ground, or a bare 
turf, in an uncertain scent, in the crossing of fresh game, 
through a flock of sheep, upon the foil or stole-back. 
The size also and strength of the hare will make a dif- 
ference ; nor must the hounds themselves be followed so 
closely, or so loudly cherished when fresh and vigorous, 
as after they have run off their speed and mettle, and 
begin to be tired. 

" I would advise a young huntsman, when the scent 
lies well, always to keep himself pretty far behind : at 
such a time (especially if it be against the wind) it is 
impossible for the poor hare to hold it forward ; nor has 
she any trick or refuge for her life, but to stop short by 
a way or path, and, when all are past, to steal immedi- 
ately back, which is often the occasion of an irrecoverable 
fault, in the midst of the warmest sport and expectations, 
and is the best trick the poor hare has for her life in 
scenting weather. Whereas, if the huntsman were not • 
too forward, he would have the advantage of seeing her 
steal off, and turniiig her aside ; or more probably the 


Harriers should be well matched in Speed. 

pleasure of the clogs returning, and thrusting her up in 

*' It is very common for the fleet dog to be the great 
favourite, though it would be much better if he were 
hanged or exchanged. Be a dog in his own nature 
never so good, yet he is not good in that pack that is too 
slow for him. There is at most times work enough for 
every one of the train, and every one ought to bear his 
part : but this it is impossible for the heavy ones to do, 
if they are run out of breath by the unproportionable 
speed of a light-heeled leader ; for it is not enough that 
they are able to keep up, (which a true hound will labour 
hard for) but they must be able to do it with ease, with 
retention of breath and spirits, and with their tongues at 
command. It must never be expected that the inden- 
tures of the hai-e can be well covered, or her doubles 
struck oft", (nor is the sport worth a farthing) if the har- 
riers run yelping in a long string, like deer or fox hounds. 

" Another thing I would advise my friends, is to hang 
up every liar and chanter, not spai'ing even those that 
are silly and trifling, without nose or sagacity. It is 
common enough in numerous kennels, to keep some for 
their music or beauty ; but this is perfectly wrong. It 
is a certain maxim, that every dog that does no good, 
does a great deal of hurt : they serve only to foil the 
ground, and confound the scent ; to scamper before, and 
interrupt their betters in the most difficult points. And 
I may venture to affirm (by long experience) that four 
or five couple, all good and trusty, will do more execu- 
tion than thirty or forty, where a third of them are eager 
and headstrong, and (like coxcombs among men) noisy 
in doing nothing. 


The Hare should be fairly hunted. 

" Above all, I abhor joining with strangers ; for that 
is the way to spoil and debauch the staunchest hunters — 
to turn the best mettled into mad-headed gallopers, liars, 
and chatterers ; and to put them on nothing but outrun- 
ning their rivals, and overrunning the scent. The emu- 
lation of leading (in dogs and their masters) has been the 
utter ruin of many a good cry. Nor are strange huntsmen 
of much better consequence than strange companions ; 
for as the skill and excellence of these animals consist 
in use and habit, they should be always accustomed to 
the same voice, the same notes or hallooings, and the 
same terms of chiding, cherishing, pressing, or recalling ; 
nor should the country fellows be allowed in their tran- 
sports to extend their throats. 

" It will be taken ill if I should also speak against a 
change of game ; because mere Squires would be at a 
great loss to kill some of their time, had they nothing to 
kill when hares are out of season. However, I am well 
satisfied, that the best harriers are those that know no 
other. Nor is it advisable to let them change for a fresh 
hare, as long as they can possibly follow the old ; nor to 
take off their noses from the scent they are upon, for 
the cutting shorter or gaining of ground. This last is 
a common trick with pot-hunters ; but as it is unfair and 
barbarous to the hare, so you will seldom find it of ad- 
vantage to the hounds." 

"By inclination (says Beckford) I was never a hare- 
hunter : I followed this diversion merely for air and exer- 
cise ; and if I could have persuaded myself to ride on 
the turnpike road to the three-mile stone and back again, 
I should have thought I had no need of a pack of har- 


Number of the Pack. 

riers. Excuse me, brother hare-hunters ! I mean not 
to offend ; I speak only of the country where I live. 
The hare-hunthig there is so bad, that, did you know 
it, your wonder would be how I could have persevered 
in it so long, not that I should forsake it now. I respect 
hunting, in whatever shape it appears : it is a manly and 
a wholesome exercise, and seems by nature designed to 
be the amusement of a Briton. 

" You ask, how many hounds a pack of harriers should 
consist of? and what kind of hound is best suited to that 
diversion ? You should never, I think, exceed twenty 
couple in the field ; it might be difficult to get a greater 
number to run well together, and a pack of harriers 
cannot be complete if they do not : besides, the fewer 
hounds you have, the less you foil the ground, which 
you otherwise would find a great hindrance to your 
hunting. Your other question is not easily answered : 
the hounds, I think, most likely to show you sport, are 
between the large slow-hunting harrier and the littleyb.f 
beagle :* one is too dull, too heavy, and too slow : the 

• Fox Beagle. — In this place, Beckford does not appear sufficiently 
explicit. Hounds may be divided into three classes, viz. the Talbot, the 
Southern Hound, and the Beagle. Fox hounds have a portion of the 
blood of the first or second, or both ; but the beagle, 1 am inclined to 
tliink, would seldom, if ever, be resorted to for the same purpose. The 
beagle is the smallest of the hound tribe, with short legs and of an elon- 
gated form, and calculated for the pursuit of the hare. 7he genuine 
Beagle may be regarded as the dwarf Talbot : like the latter, he has a very 
capacious head and large pendant ears, and, like the latter also, he is re- 
markable for tenderness of nose, and deep, sonorous music : the genuine 
Beagle has, it is true, undergone some alterations in his form : he lias been 
rendered lighter and more fleet, his head has been compressed, and his nose 


The Hound best calculated for Hare Hunting. 

other, too lively, too light, and too fleet. The first, it 
is true, have most excellent noses, and I make no doubt 
will kill their game at last, if the day be long enough ; 
but you know the days are short in winter, and it is bad 
hunting in the dark. The others, on the contrary, fling 
and dash, and are all alive ; but every cold blast affects 
them ; and if your country is deep and wet, it is not im- 
possible but some of them may be drowned. My hounds 
were a cross of both these kinds, in which it was my en- 
deavour to get as much bone and strength in as small a 
compass as possible. It was a difficult undertaking. I 
bred many years, and an infinity of hounds, before I 
could get what I wanted : I, at last, had the pleasure to 
see them very handsome ; small, yet very bony : they 
ran remarkably well together ; ran fast enough ; had all 
the alacrity you could desire ; and would hunt the coldest 

" It may be necessary to unsay, now I am turned hare- 
hunter again, many things I have been saying as a fox- 
hunter ; as I hardly know any two things of the same 
genus (if I may be allowed the expression) that differ so 
entirely. What I said in a former letter, about the 
huntsman and whipper-in, are among the number : as to 
the huntsman, I think, he should not be young : I should 
most certainly prefer one, as the French call it, cVun 
certain age, as he is to be quiet and patient ; for patience, 

rendered more pointed and sharp ; and he has thus exhibited (as indeed 
must be the case) inferior organs of smell, and a harsh and less musical 
voice : yet, under any circumstances, the beagle could never be calculated 
for the pursuit of the fox ; it would therefore appear that the term /ox 
engfe is not well applied to this little liound. 


Much Noise and Rattle inconsistent witli Hare Hunting. 

he should be a very Grizzle ; and the more quiet he is, 
the better. He should have infinite perseverance ; for 
a hare should never be given up whilst it is possible to 
hunt her : she is sure to stop, and therefore may always 
be recovered. 

*' The whipper-in also ha§ little to do with the one I 
before described : yet he may be like the second whip- 
per-in to a pack of fox hounds ; the stable boy who is 
to follow the huntsman : but I would have him still more 
confined, for he should not dare even to stop a hound, 
or smack a whip, without the huntsman's order. Much 
noise and rattle is directly contrary to the first principles 
of hare-hunting, which is to be perfectly quiet, and to 
let your hounds alone. I have seen few hounds so good 
as town packs, that have no professed huntsman to follow 
them. If they have no one to help them, they have at 
the same time no one to spoil them ; which, I believe, 
for this kind of hunting, is still more material. I should, 
however, mention a fault I have observed, and which 
such hounds must' of necessity sometimes be guilty of, 
that is, running back the heel. Hounds are naturally 
fond of scent ; if they cannot carry it forward, they will 
turn, and hunt it back again : hounds that are left to 
themselves make a ftiult of this, and it is, I think, the only 
one they commonly have. Though it is certainly best 
to let your hounds alone, and thei*eby to give as much 
scope to their natural instinct as you can ; yet in this 
particular instance you should check it mildly ; for as it 
is almost an invariable rule in all hunting to make the 
head good, you should encoin-age tlicm to try forward 
first; which may ho done without taking them oif their 



Harriets sliould lie kept to their own Game. 

noses, or without the least prejudice to their hunting. 
If trying forward should not succeed, they may then be 
suffered to try back again, which you will find them all 
ready enough to do ; for they are sensible how far they 
brought the scent, and where they left it. 

" Harriers, to be good, like all other hounds, must be 
kept to their own game. If you run fox with them, you 
spoil them. Hounds cannot be perfect unless used to 
one scent, and one style of hunting. Harriers run fox 
in so different a style from hare, that it is of great dis- 
service to them when they return to hare again. It 
makes them wild, and teaches them to skirt. The high 
scent Vv^hich a fox leaves, the straightness of his running, 
the eagerness of the pursuit, and the noise that generally 
accompanies it, all contribute to spoil a harrier. 

" I hope you agree with me, that it is a favdt in a pack 
of harriers to go too fast ; for a hare is a little timorous 
animal, that we cannot help feeling some compassion for, 
at the very time when we are pursuing her destruction : 
we sliould give scope to all her little tricks, nor kill her 
foully and overmatched. Instinct instructs her to make 
a good defence, when not unfairly treated ; and I will 
venture to say, that, as far as her own safety is concerned, 
she has more cunning than the fox, and makes many 
shifts to save her life, far beyond all his r.rlifice. Without 
doubt, you have often heard of hares, who, from the 
miraculous escapes they have made, have been thought 
ivitches ; but, I believe, you never heard of a fox that 
had cunning enough to be thought a wizard. 

" They who like to rise early have amusement in seeing 
the hare trailed to her form ; it is of areat service to 


Of Hare Finders and Chopping Hares. 

hounds ; it also shows their goodness to the huntsman 
more than any other hunting, as it discovers to him those 
who have the most tender noses. But, I confess, I seldom 
thought it worth while to leave my bed a moment sooner 
on that account. I always thought hare-hunting should 
be taken as a ride after breakfast, to get us an appetite 
to our dinner. If you make a serious business of it, I 
think you spoil it. Hare-finders, in this case, are neces- 
sary : it is agreeable to know where to go immediately 
for your diversion, and not beat about for hours perhaps 
before you find. It is more material, I think, with re- 
gard to the second hare than the first : for if you are 
warmed with your gallop, the waiting long in the cold 
afterwards is, I believe, as unwholesome as it is disagree- 
able. Whoever does not mind this, had better let his 
hounds find their own game ; they will certainly hunt it 
with more spirit afterwards, and he will have a pleasure 
himself in expectation, which no certainty can ever give. 
Hare-finders make hounds idle ; they also make them 
wild. Mine knew the men as well as I did myself; could 
see them almost as far, and would run full cry to meet 
them. Hare-finders are of one great use : they hinder 
your hounds from chopping hares, which they otherwise 
could not fail to do. I had in my pack one hound in 
particular that was famous for it ; he would challenge on 
a trail very late at noon, and had as good a knack at 
chopping a hare afterwards ; he was one that liked to go 
the shortest way to work, nor did he choose to take 
more trouble than was necessary. Is it not wonderful 
that the trail of a hare shoidd lie after so many hours, 
when the scent of her dies away so soon ? 

n 9 


Of the Pursuit 

" Hares are said (I know not with what truth) to foresee 
a change of weather, and to seat themselves accordingly. 
This is however certain, that they are seldom found in 
places much exposed to the wind. In inclosures, I think, 
they more frequently are found near to a hedge than in 
the middle of a field. They who make a profession of 
hare finding (and a very advantageous one it is in some 
countries) are directed by the wind where to look for 
their game. With good eyes and nice observation, they 
are enabled to find them in any weather. 

" When the game is fovmd, you cannot be too quiet : 
the hare is an animal so very timorous, that she is fre- 
quently headed back, and your dogs are liable to overrun 
the scent at every instant : it is best, therefore, to keep 
a considerable way behind them, that they may have 
room to turn as soon as they perceive they have lost the 
scent ; and if treated in this manner, they will seldom 
overrun it much. Your hounds, through the whole 
chase, should be left almost entirely to themselves, nor 
should they be hallooed too much : when the hare 
doubles, they should hunt through those doubles ; nor 
is a hare hunted fairly when hunted otherwise. They 
should follow her every step she takes, as well over 
greasy fallows as through large flocks of sheep ; nor 
should they ever be cast but when nothing can be done 
without it. 

" I have already observed that a trail in the morning 
is of great service to hounds, and that to be perfect they 
should always find their own game ; for the method of 
hare finding, though more convenient, will occasion some 
vices in them, which it will be impossible to correct. 


of the Hare. 

" Mr. Sonicrvile's authority strengthens my observa- 
tion, that M'hen a hare is found, all should be quiet ; nor 
should you ride near your hounds, till they are well 
settled to the scent. 

" Let all be hiish'd, 

No clamour loud, no frantic joy l)e heard ; 
Lest the wild liound run gadding o'er the plain 
Untractable, nor licar ihy chiding voice." 

" The natural eagerness of the hounds will, at such a 
time as this, frequently carry even the best of them wide 
of the scent, which too much encouragement, or pressing 
too close upon them, may continue beyond all possibility 
of recovery ; this should be always guarded against. 
After a little while, you have less to fear : you may then 
approach them nearer, and encourage them more ; 
leaving, however, at all times sufficient room for them to 
turn, should they overrun the scent. On high roads 
and dry paths, be always doubtful of the scent, nor give 
them much encouragement ; but when a hit is made on 
either side, you may halloo as much as you please, nor 
can you then encourage your hounds too much. A hare 
generally describes a circle as she runs ; larger or less, 
according to her strength, and the openness of the 
country. In inclosures, and where there is much cover, 
the circle is for the most part so small, that it is a constant 
puzzle to the hounds. They have a Gordian knot, in 
that case, ever to unloose ; and though it may afford 
matter of speculation to the philosopher, it is always 
contrary to the wishes of the sportsman. Such was the 
country I hunted in for many years. 



Of Running the Foil and the Doubles of the Hare. 

•' Huntsman ! her gait observe : if in wide rings 
She wheel her raazy way, in the same round 
Persisting still, she'll foil the beaten track. 
But if she fly, and, with the fav'ring wind, 
Urge her bold course, less intricate tliy task ; 
Push on thy pack." — Somervile. 

"Besides running the foil, they frequently make 
doubles, which is going forward to tread the same steps 
back again, on purpose to confuse their pursuers; and 
in the same manner in which they make the first double 
they generally continue, whether long or short. This 
information, therefore, if properly attended to by the 
huntsman, may also be of use to him in his casts. 

" When they make their double on a high road, or 
dry path, and then leave it with a spring, it is often the 
occasion of a long fault : the spring which a hare makes 
on these occasions is hardly to be credited, any more 
than is her ingenuity in making it ; both are wojiderful ! 

" ■ let cavillers deny 

That brutes have reason ; sure 'lis something more : 

'Tis Heav'n directs, and stratagems inspire, 

Beyond the short extent of human thought." — Somervilk. 

She frequently, after running a path a considerable way, 
will make a double, and then stop till the hounds have 
past her ; she will then steal away as secretly as she can, 
and return the same way she came : this is the greatest 
of all trials for hounds. It is so hot a foil, that in the 
best packs there are not many hounds that can hunt it ; 
you must follow those hounds that can, and try to hit 
her off where she breaks her foil, which in all proba- 


Ofa Check and Fault 

bility she will soon do, as she now flatters herself she is 
secure. When the scent hes bad in cover, she will 
sometimes hunt the hounds. 

The covert's utmost bound 

Slily she skirts ; behind them cautious creeps, 
And in that very track, so lately stain'd 
By all the steaming crowd, seems to pursue 
The foe she flies." — Sojis-rvilf.. 

Allien the hounds are at a check, make your huntsman 
stand still, nor suffer him to move his horse one way or 
the other : hounds lean naturally towards the scent, and 
if he does not say a word to them, will soon recover it. 
If you speak to a hound at such a time, calling him by 
his name, which is too much the practice, he seldom 
fails to look up in your face, as much as to say, what the 
deuce do you want ? When he stoops to the scent 
again, is it not probable he means to say, you fool you, 
let me alone! 

" When your hounds are at fault, let not a word be 
said. In a good day, good hounds seldom give up the 
scent at head ; if they do, there is generally an obvious 
reason for it : this observation a huntsman should always 
make : it will direct his cast. If he is a good one, he 
will be attentive as he goes, not only to his hounds, nicely 
observing which have the lead, and the degree of scent 
they carry, but also to the various circumstances that 
are continually happening from change of weather, and 
difference of ground. He will also be mindful of the 
distance which the hare keeps before the hounds, and 
of her former doubles, and he will remark what point 


Of Casting Harriers. 

she makes to. All these observations will be of use, 
should a long fault make his assistance necessary ; and 
if the hare has headed back, he will carefully observe 
whether she met any thing in her course to turn her, or 
turned of her own accord. When he casts his hounds, 
let him begin by making a small circle : if that will not 
do, then let him try a larger : he afterwards may be at 
liberty to persevere in any cast he may judge most likely. 
As a hare generally revisits her old haunts, and returns 
to the place where she was first found, if the scent is 
quite gone, and the hounds can no longer hunt, that is 
as likely a cast as any to recover her. Let him remember 
this in all his casts, that the hounds are not to follow his 
horse's heels ; nor are they to carry their heads high, 
and noses in the air. At these times they must try for 
the scent, or they will never find it ; and he is either to 
make his cast slow or quick, as he perceives his hounds 
try, and as the scent is either good or bad. 

" Give particular directions to your huntsman to 
prevent his hounds, as much as he can, from chopping 
hares. Huntsmen like to get blood at any rate ; and 
when hounds are used to it, it would surprise you to see 
how attentive they are to find opportunities. A hare 
must be very wild, or very nimble, to escape them. I 
remember, in a furzy country, that my hounds chopped 
three hares in one morning ; for it is the nature of those 
animals either to leap up before the hounds come near 
them, and steal away, as it is called ; or else to lie close, 
till they put their very noses upon them. Hedges also 
are very dangerous : if the huntsman beats the hedge 
himself, which is the usual practice, the hounds are 


Babblers should not be kept 

always upon the watch, and a hare must have good 
hick to escape them all. The best way to prevent it, is 
to have the hedge well beaten at some distance before 
the hounds. 

" Hares seldom rim so well as when they do not know 
where they are. They run well in a fog, and generally 
take a good country. If they set oiFdown the wind, they 
seldom return ; you then cannot push on your hounds 
too much. When the game is sinking, you will perceive 
your old hounds get forward ; they then will run at 

" Happy the man, who with unrivall'd speed 
Can pass his fellows, and with pleasure view 
The struggling pack ; how in the rapid course 
Alternate they preside, and jostling push 
To guide the dubious scent ; how giddy youth 
Oft babbling errs, by wiser age improved ; 
How, niggard of his strength, the wise old hound 
Hangs in the rear, till some important point 
Rouse all his diligence, or till the chase 
Sinking he finds j then to tlie head he springs, 
With thirst of glory fired, and wins the prize." 


Keep no babblers ; for though the rest of the pack 
soon find them out, and do not mind them, yet it is un- 
pleasant to hear their noise ; nor are such fit companions 
for the rest. 

" Keep no hound that runs false : the loss of one hare 
is more than such a dog is worth. 

"It is too much the custom, first to ride over a dog, 
and then cry 'ware horse/ Take care not to ride over 
your hoimds : I have known many a good dog spoiled ])y 


Of Hsre Warrens 

it. In open ground speak to them first ; you may after- 
wards ride over them, if you please ; but in roads and 
paths they frequently cannot get out of your way : it surely 
then is your business either to stop your horse, or break 
the way for them ; and the not doing it, give me leave 
to say, is absurd and cruel ; nor can that man be called 
a good sportsman who thus wantonly destroys his own 

On the subject of Hare-warrens, Beckford observes : — 
You wish to know how my warren-hares are caught i 
" they are caught in traps, not unlike the common rat- 
traps. I leave mine always at the muses, but they are 
set only when hares are wanted : the hares, by thus con- 
stantly going through them, have no mistrust, and are 
easily caught. These traps should be made of old wood, 
and even then it will be some time before they venture 
through them. Other muses must be also left open, 
lest a distaste should make them forsake the place. To 
my warren I have about twenty of these traps ; though, 
as the stock of hares is great, I seldom have occasion to 
set more than five or six, and scarcely ever fail of catching 
as many hares. The warren is paled in, but I found it 
necessary to make the muses of brick ; that is, where 
the traps are placed. Should you at any time wish to 
make a hare-warren, it will be necessary for yovi to see 
one first, and examine the traps, boxes, and stoppers, to 
all which there are particularities not easy to be described. 
Should you find the hares, towards the end of the sea- 
son, shy of the traps, from having been often caught, it 
will be necessary to drive them in with spaniels. Should 
this be the case, von will find them very thick round the 


and Warren Hares. 

warren ; for the warren-hares will be unwilling to leave 
it, and, when disturbed by dogs, will immediately go in. 

" If you turn them out before greyhounds, you cannot 
give them too much law ; if before hounds you cannot 
give them too little ; for reasons which I will give you 
presently. Though hares, as I told you before, never 
run so well before hounds as when they do not know 
where they ai-e, yet before greyhounds it is the reverse; 
and your trap-hares, to run well, should always be turned 
out within their knowledge : they are naturally timid, 
and are easily disheartened when they have no point to 
make to for safety. 

" If you turn out any befoi'e your hounds (which, if 
it is not your wish, I shall by no means recommend) do 
not give them much time, but lay on your hounds as soon 
as they are out of view : if you do not, they will very 
likely stop, which is often fatal. Views are at all times 
to be avoided, but particularly with trap-hares ; for, as 
these know not where they are, the hounds have too 
great an advantage over them. It is best to turn them 
down the wind ; they hear the hounds better and seldom 
turn again. Hounds for this business should not be too 
fleet. These hares run straight, and make no doubles ; 
they leave a strong scent, and have other objections in 
common with animals turned out before hounds : they 
may give you a gallop, but they will show but little 
hunting. The hounds are to be hunted like a pack of 
fox-hounds, as a trap-hare runs very much in the same 
manner, and will even top the hedges. What I should 
prefer to catching the hares in traps, would be a warren 
in the midst of an open country, which might be stopped 


Hare Hunting favourable to Pedestrians. 

close on hunting days. This would supply the whole 
country with hares, which, after one turn round the 
warren, would most probably run straight an end. The 
number of hares a warren will supply is hardly to be 
conceived : I seldom turned out less in one year than 
thirty brace of trap-hares, besides a great many more 
killed in the environs, of M'hich no account was taken. 
My M'arren is a wood of near thirty acres : one of half 
the size would answer the purpose to the full as well. 
Mine is cut out into many walks ; a smaller warren should 
have only one, and t/mt round the outside of it. No 
dog should ever be suffered to go into it ; and traps 
should be constantly set for stoats and polecats. It is 
said, parsley makes hares strong ; they certainly are vei'y 
fond of eating it : it therefore cannot be amiss to sow 
some within the warren, as it will be a means of keeping 
your hares more at home." 

Hare-hunting, however, will always be a favourite 
diversion with the pedestrian sportsman ; as from the 
manner of running which characterises the object of 
pursuit, he is enabled to witness a considerable portion 
of the chase : this circumstance is thus noticed by Somer- 
vile : — 

" Hark ! from yon covert, where those towering oaks 
Above the humble copse aspiring rise, 
What glorious triumphs burst in every gale 
Upon our ravish'd ears ! the hunter's shout, 
The clanging horns swell their sweet winding notes, 
The pack wide-opening load the trembling air 
With various melody ; from tree to tree 
The propagated cry redoubling bounds, 
And winged zephyrs waft the floating joy 


Of Harriers. 

Through all the rigions near : afflictive birch 
No more the school boy dreads, his prison broke, 
Scampering he flies, nor heeds his master's call ; 
The weary traveller forgets his road. 
And climbs th' adjacent hill ; the ploughman leaves 
Th' unfinish'd furrow ; nor his bleating flocks 
Are now the shepherd's joy ! men, boys, and girls, 
Desert th' unpeopled village ; and wild crowds 
Spread o'er the plain, by the sweet frenzy seiz'd." 

It has been the fashion of late years to breed harriers 
with the power and speed of fox hounds, or nearly so. 
I was out with a pack of this sort, in the month of Janu- 
ary, 1825, They were called the Kirkham (in Lan- 
cashire) harriers, and belonged to Mr. King ; and were 
large, powerful, and altogether handsome hounds : they 
were more than a match for a hare : I saw them kill two 
brace one morning, and that too in a very short time. 
Much pains had no doubt been taken in breeding them ; 
for, although they were very fleet, they retained much 
of the Talbot, and displayed excellent olfactory organs. 
There are still to be found in some of the hilly districts 
of Lancashire (and in other parts of England, for aught 
I know to the contrary) harriers which partake so much 
of the southern hound as to render them well calculated 
for the diversion. They are not too fleet, have excellent 
noses and delightful nuisic ; and such hounds I should 
choose for the purpose of hare-hunting, though I am 
well aware, that excellent harriers may be produced by 
crossing the hounds of this description with the beagle ; 
while there are many impetuous sportsmen who prefer 
harriers bred as fleet as possible. 

How far the union of uncommon speed and nuisic are 
compatible I am somewhat doubtful: a hound, I am 


Of Speed and Music. 

inclined to think, cannot run at the very top of his speed, 
and send forth a considerable volume of music at the same 
time. In the latter end of the month of February, 1825, 
I was out with a pretty pack of harriers belonging to 
R. Seed, Esq. in the neighbourhood of Liverpool: we 
had quested for some hours, without finding, and had 
every prospect of a blank day, when, about three o'clock, 
a hare moved from a wheat field, in the township of 
Maghull, and went away as if she meant to run. The 
hounds got well settled to the scent immediately, and ran 
breast high. The hare never doubled, the scent was as 
good as possible, and such was the speed of the hounds 
that it was not without the utmost difficulty the leading 
sportsmen could keep with them. The pack ran un- 
commonly well together, but were by no means so loud 
and musical as usual ; and in running over some fine 
grazizig ground, they became nearly mute : Pilot, one of 
the pack, a dog with much of the southern blood in his 
composition, who was remarkable for music, and whose 
voice was generally heard above the rest, crossed a con- 
siderable space without opening. In fact, I never saw 
these harriers run with such speed, or make so little 
noise over it. The hare ran six miles, and was killed 
almost without the occurrence of a trifling check. From 
this, as well as similar circumstances which I have wit- 
nessed, I infer that a hound, when running at the very 
extremity of his speed, cannot be very musical ; indeed, 
if we reason upon the matter, we must come to the same 


Stag Hunting. — Otter Hunting. 

In regard to Stag Hunting, upon which I intend to 
make a few observations, it has gradually given way to 
the increasing cultivation of the country ; and as the 
object of pvu'suit has nearly ceased to exist in a state of 
unlimited freedom, this noble and princely diversion has, 
of course, in a great degree subsided. Some few wild 
deer are still to be met with in Ireland ; in the Highlands 
of Scotland, particularly in the neighbourhood of Blair 
Athol, these beautiful animals are still to be found roam- 
ing at large ; in some parts of Devonshire, wild deer 
may be occasionally seen : but the mode in which the 
pursuit of the stag is at present conducted in this coun- 
try, (with very little, if any, exception) is by taking a 
semi-domesticated deer in a cart to an appointed spot, 
and turning him out before the hounds. Reasonable 
law is allowed him ; nor is this all ; for, if the hounds 
approach too near their game, they are stopped, and the 
stag allowed to get ahead again. Sometimes the animal 
is sulky, and will not run ; but supposing the contrary, 
and the stag goes away in gallant style, the hounds would 
soon run up to him, if they were not stopped : the stag 
is very soon blown, and if not allowed to get second wind, 
the business of course must be over in a few minutes. 
However, by repeatedly stopping the hounds, the chase 
is sometimes lengtlicned to several hours, and is thus, no 


stag Hunting. 

doubt, highly gratifying to the stag hunter ; but would 
perhaps appear like an apology for hunting in the esti- 
mation of a fox hunter. 

His late Majesty, George III. was very partial to stag 
hunting ; but it has been remarked that if he " had ever 
seen a fox well found and handsomely killed," he would 
have preferred the pursuit of the fox to that of the stag : 
I have no doubt such would have been the case — it could 
not have been otherwise. The stag-hunting of George 
III. was gorgeous and imposing, and this monarch was 
very affable in the field. The late king sat tolerably 
well on horseback ; yet the hounds were frequently 
stopped to enable him to come up ; when they were 
again suffered to proceed : a fox hunter would have 
thought little of such doings ; but he would nevertheless 
have been highly gratified with the pleasing familiarity 
of the king. His present Majesty, George IV. does not 
attend the royal hounds, though they go out regularly 
by his command, and are kept up in as much style (if 
not more) than they were during the life of his father. 

The Earl of Derby also has an establishment for 
stag-hunting ; and his lordship pursues the stag during 
the season in Surrey. The hounds for the purpose have 
been bred from fox hounds, and are consequently very 
fleet. There are a few other stag-hunting establish- 
ments in England, which, however, do not require any 
particular notice in this place. 

The stag-hunting of former days was a very different 
business. Prior to the inclosure of the various forests, 
wild deer were plentiful, and the stag at this period, in 
all probability, afforded excellent runs — in fact, stag- 


Ancient Method of Stag Hunting. 

hunting at that time might be regarded in the same hght 
as fox-hunting is viewed at the present day, namely, as 
superior to all other diversions of the field. 

Of the stag-hunting of former tunes, some idea may 
he formed from the following : 

The huntsman rose at early morn to track the deer 
to his lair, and then being sure of his game, returned 
to the sportsmen ; who, we must suppose, dined at our 
hour of breakfasting, and afterwards hied them to the 

" I am the hunt, which rathe and earely rise, 

(My botlell filde with wine in any wise) 

Two draughts I drinke, to stay my steps withall, 

For each foote one, because I would not fall. 

Then take my hound, in liara me behind. 

The stately hart in fryth or fell to find. 

And whiles I seeke his slotte where he hath fedde, 

The sweet byrdes sing, to cheare my drowsie head. 

And when my hound doth straine upon good vent, 

I must confesse, the same doth me content. 

But when I hauc my couerts walkt about, 

And harbred fast, the hart for comming out ; 

Then I returne, to make a graue report, 

Whereas I find th' assembly doth resort. 

And lowe T crouch, before the lordlings all, 

Out of my home, the fewmets let I fall, 

And other signcs and tokens do I tell, 

To make them hope, the hart may like them well. 

Then they command, that 1 the wine should taste ; 

So biddes mine art — and so my throat I baste. 

The dinner done, I go straightwayes againe, 

Vnto my markes, and shew my master plaine. 

Then put my hound, vpon the view to drawe, 

And rowse the hart out of his layre by lawe. 

O gamsters all, a little by your leaue, 

Can you such ioyes in trifling games conceaue ? 


stag Hunting of Queen Elizabeth. 

In 1575, when Queen Elizabeth was so magnificently 
entertained by her favourite, Dudley, Earl of Leicester, 
at Kenilworth Castle, hart-hunting was one of the amuse- 
ments she partook of, and which a spectator thus de- 
scribes : — 

" The Hunting of the Hart at Fors. — Munday was 
hot, and thearfore her highness kept in till a five a clok 
in the eevening : what time it pleazz'd her to ride foorth 
into the chace too hunt the hart of fors : which foound 
anon, and after sore chased by the hot pursuit of the 
hooundes, was fain of fine fors, at last to take soil. Thear 
to beholld the swift fleeting of the deer afore with the 
stately cariage of his head in hiz swimmyng, spred (for 
the quantitee) lyke the sail of a ship : the hounds har- 
loing after, az they had bin a number of skiphs too the 
spoyle of a karvell : the ton no lesse eager in purchaz of 
his pray, then was the other earnest in savegard of hiz 
life : so az the earning of the hoounds in continuauns of 
their crie, the swiftness of the deer, the running of the 
footmen, the galloping of horsez, the blasting of hornz, 
the hallooing and hewing of the huntsmen, with the ex- 
cellent echoz between whilez from the woods and waters 
in valleiz resounding; mooved pastime delectabl in so 
hye a degree, az for ony parson to take pleazure by 
moost sensez at onez, in mine opinion, thear can be none 
ony wey comparable to this ; and speciall in this place, 
that of nature is foormed so fytt for the purpose ; in feith. 
Master Martin, if ye coold with a wish, I woold ye had 
bin at it : wel, the hart was kild, a goodly deer, but so 
ceast not the game yet. 


Chase of 3 Hart by Richard I. 

" The Hart 2:>ardoned. — Wednsday, her majesty rode 
intoo the chase, to hunting again of the hart of fors. The 
deer, after his property, for refuge took the soyl ; but so 
master'd by hote pursuit on al parts, that he was taken 
quick in the pool : the Avatermen held him up hard by 
the hed, while at her highness commaundment he lost 
his earz for a raundsum, and so had pardon for lyfe." 

In early times, when the king lost a stag, open pro- 
clamations were made in all towns and villages, near 
where the deer was supposed to remain, that no person 
should kill, hunt, or chase him, that he might safely 
retiu'n to the forest again ; and the foresters were or- 
dered to harbour the said hart, and by degrees to bring 
him back to the forest, and that deer was ever after 
called, a hart royal proclaimed. Some years since an 
old record remained in Nottingham Castle, stating, that 
in 1194 Richard the First chased a hart from Sherwood 
Forest to Barnsdale, in Yorkshire, and there lost him. 
He made proclamation at Tunhill in Yorkshire, and 
divers other places in the neighbourhood of Barnsdale, 
that no person should chase, kill, or hunt the said deer, 
that he might return to his lair in the forest of Sher- 

Wliite-hart-silter, as it is called, was a heavy fine 
laid on some lands, near the forest of Blackmore, Dor- 
setshire : the proprietor, T. de la Lynde, a Dorsetshire 
baron, in the time of Henry III. having destroyed a 
white hart, which had afforded that prince much amuse- 
ment, (probably had been proclaimed) : an acknoM'Iedg- 
ment of which has been paid into the exchequer so late 
as the reign of Elizabeth. 


An extraordinary Wager. 

What follows, describes a stake, upon the capture 
of a deer, that perhaps neither ancient nor modern his- 
tory can parallel : — 

*' The St. Clairs are of Norman extraction, being de- 
scended from William de St. Clair, and Margaret, 
daughter of Richard, Duke of Normandy. He was 
called, for his fair deportment, the seemly St. Clair, and 
settling in Scotland during the reign of Malcolm Cean- 
more, obtained large grants of land in Mid-lothian. 
These domains were increased, by the liberality of suc- 
ceeding monavchs, to the descendants of the family, and 
comprehended the baronies of Rosline, Pentland, Cows- 
land, Cardaine, and several others. It is said a large 
addition was obtained from Robert Bruce on this occa- 
sion : — The king, in following the chase upon Pentland 
Hills, had often started a ' white faunch deer,' which had 
always escaped from his hounds ; and he asked the 
nobles, who w^ere assembled around him, whether any 
of them had dogs which they thought might be more 
successful. No courtier would affirm that his hounds 
were fleeter than those of the king, imtil Sir William 
St. Clair, of Rosline, unceremoniously said, he would 
wager his head that his two favourite dogs, ' Help and 
Hold,' would kill the deer before she could cross the 
March-burn. The king instantly caught at his unwary 
offer, and betted the forest of Pentland Moor against 
the life of Sir William St. Clair. All the hounds were 
tied up, except a few ratches or slow hounds, to rouse 
the deer; whilst Sir William St. Clair, posting himself 
in the best situation for slipping his dogs, prayed de- 
voutly to Christ, thr blessed Virgin, and St. Katharine. 


otter Hunting. 

The deer was shortly after roused, and the hounds 
sHpped; Sir WiUiam following himself on a gallant steed 
to cheer his dogs. The hind, however, reached the 
middle of the brook, upon which the hunter threw him- 
self from his horse in despau'. At this critical moment, 
however, Hold stopped her in the brook; and Help, 
coming up, turned her back, and killed her on Sir Wil- 
liam's side. The king descended from the hill, embraced 
Sir William, and bestowed on him the lands of Kirkton, 
Laganhouse, Earncraig, &c. in free forestrie. Sir Wil- 
liam, in acknowledgment of St. Katharine's intercession, 
built the chapel of St. Katharine in the Hopes, the 
chapel yard of which is still to be seen. The hill from 
which Robert Bruce beheld this memorable chase is 
still called the King's Hill; and the place where Sir 
William hunted is called the Knight's Field." 

Otter hunting, like the pursuit of the stag, is, at 
present, but little followed. Of all field amusements, 
otter hunting is perhaps the least interesting. Fox 
hounds, harriers, or indeed any kind of hounds, will 
pursue the otter ; though the dog chiefly used for the 
purpose has been produced by a cross between the 
southern hound and the water spaniel. Those who 
have never witnessed otter hunting, may form a tolerable 
notion of the business by imaging to the mind a superior 
duck hunt ; though Somervile has rendered it immortal 
by the follov/ing beautiful lines : — 

•' The subtle spoiler of the beaver kind, 
Far off perhaps, where ancient alders shade 
The deep still pool ; within some hollow trunk. 
Contrives his wii-ker couch : whence he surveys 
P. J 


Somervile's Description of 

His long purlieu, lord of the stream, and all 

The finny shoals his own. But you, brave youths. 

Dispute the felon's claim ; try every root. 

And every reedy bank ; encourage all 

The busy-spreading pack, that fearless plunge 

Into the flood, and cross the rapid stream. 

Bid rocks and caves, and each resounding shore, 

Proclaim your bold defiance ; loudly raise 

Each cheering voice, till distant hills repeat 

The triumphs of the vale. On the soft sand 

See there his seal impress'd ! and on that bank 

Behold the glittering spoils, half-eaten fish, 

Scales, fins, and bones, the leavings of his feast. 

Ah! on that yielding sag-bed, see, once more, 

His seal I view. O'er yon dark rushy marsh 

The sly goose-footed prowler bends his course, 

And seeks the distant shallows. Huntsman, bring 

Thy eager pack, and trail him to his couch. 

Hark ! the loud peal begins, the clamorous joy. 

The gallant chiding, loads the trembling air. How greedily 

They snufT the fishy steam, that to each blade 

Rank-scenting clings. See ! how the morning dews 

They sweep, that from their feet besprinkling drop 

Dispers'd, and leave a track oblique behind. 

Now on firm land they range; then in the flood 

They plunge tumultuous ; or through reedy pools 

Rustling they work their way ; no hole escapes 

Their curious search. With quick sensation now 

The fuming vapour stings ; flutter their hearts, 

And joy redoubled bursts from every mouth 

In louder symphonies. Yon hollow trunk, 

That with its hoary head incurv'd salutes 

The passing wave, must be the tyrant's fort, 

And dread abode. How these impatient climb. 

While others at the root incessant bay ! 

They put him down. See, there he dives along! 

Th' ascending bubbles mark his gloomy way. 

Quick fix the nets, and cut off his retreat 


the Pursuit of the Otter. 

Into the sheltering deeps ! Ah ! there he vents ! 

The pack plunge headlong, and protended spears 

Menace destruction : while the troubled surge 

Indignant foams, and all the scaly kind, 

Affrighted, hide their heads. Wild tumult reigns, 

And loud uproar. Ah ! there once more he vents ! 

See, that bold hound has seiz'd him ; down they sink 

Together lost : but soon shall he repent 

His rash assault. See ! there escap'd, he flies 

Half drown'd, and clambers up the slippery bank 

With ouze and blood distain'd. Of all the brutes. 

Whether by nature form'd, or by long use, 

This artful diver best can bear the want 

Of vital air. Unequal is the fight, 

Beneath the whelming element. Yet there 

He lives not long ; but respiration needs 

At proper intervals. Again he vents; 

Again the crowd attack. That spear has pierc'd 

His neck; the crimson waves confess the wound. 

Fix'd is the bearded lance, unwelcome guest, 

Where'er he flies; with him it sinks beneath, 

With him it mounts; sure guide to every foe. 

Inly he groans ; nor can his tender wound 

Bear the cold stream. Lo ! to yon sedgy bank 

He creeps disconsolate ; his numerous foes 

Surround him, hounds and men. Pierc'd thro' and thro', 

On pointed spears they lift him high in air: 

Wriggling he hangs and grins, and bites in vain : 

Bid the loud horns, in gaily warbling strains. 

Proclaim the felon's fate— he dies ! he dies ! '* 


Of Scent. — Influence of the Atmosphere upon Scent. — 
Is differetit in different Anhnals. 

Scent is that exudation or effluvium, which is con- 
stantly issuing fi'om the pores of all animal substances, 
and consists of minute particles or corpuscles, which, 
driven by the wind or otherwise, and coming in contact 
with the olfactory nerves of the hound, enable him to 
follow his game, or to continue the pursuit. Several 
writers have given their opinion upon this subject, which 
I shall place successively before the reader. An author, 
(the Old Squire) whom I have already noticed observes : 

" Above all other things, the scent has been ever my 
admiration: the bulk, size, figure, and other accidents 
or qualities of these parts or portions of matter that dis- 
charge themselves from the bodies of these beasts of 
game, are subjects much fitter for the experiments and 
learned descants of a philosopher, than a simple hunts- 
man. Whether they are to be considered as an extrane- 
ous stock or treasure of odoriferous particles given them 
by Divine Wisdom, for the very purpose of hunting? 
whether they are proper identical parts of the animal's 
body, that continually ferment and perspire from it? 
whether these exhalations are from the breath of her 
lungs, or through the skin of her whole body ? are 
questions also that deserve the subtilty of a virtuoso. 
But such observations as long experience has suggested 


Smallncss of the Particles of Scent. 

to me, I shall, in the plainest manner I am able, lay 
before my readers. 

** That these particles are inconceivably small, is (I 
think) manifest from their vast numbers. I have taken 
hundreds of hares, after a chase of two, three, four, or 
live hours, and could never perceive the least difference 
in bulk or weight, from those I have seized or snapt in 
their forms : nor could I ever learn from gentlemen who 
have hunted basket hares, that theycould discover any 
visible waste in their bodies, any farther than may be 
supposed to be the effect of discharging their grosser 
excrements. But, supposing an abatement of two or 
three grains, or drams, after so long a fatigue ; yet how 
minute and almost infinite must be the division of so 
small a quantity of matter, when it affords a share to so 
many couple of dogs, for eight, ten, or twelve miles suc- 
cessively : deducting at the same time, the much greater 
numbers of those particles, that are lost in the ground, 
dissipated in the air, extinguished and obscured by the 
foetid perspirations of the dogs, and other animals ; or 
by the very fumes and exhalations of the earth itself. 
That these particles are subject to such dissipation or 
corruption, every sportsman knows ; for as none of them 
will retain their odour after a certain proportionable 
time, so it is daily evident that this time of their duration 
is very obnoxious to the vicissitudes of the weather, that 
the scent of the animal (as well as her more solid flesh) 
will lose its sweetness sooner or later, according to the 
disposition of the ambient air. I have frequently heard 
the good housewives complain that, against rain or 
thunder, their milk will turn, and their larders taint ; 


Effect of the Atmosphere 

and I have as often perceived that, a storm approaching, 
the scent will in a moment change and vanish. Nor is 
the suddenness of such alteration the least wonder, if 
we take into consideration the smallness of the particles. 
The same efficient cause may penetrate and corrupt 
these minute corpuscles in the twinkling of an eye, which 
requires an hour or a day to operate on bodies of greater 
bulk and substance : as the same fire or aquafortis will 
dissolve the filings of steel in an instant ; though a pound 
lump of that same metal is so long able to resist their 

" That these particles of scent are of an equal (exactly 
equal) specific gravity with the particles of the air, is 
demonstrated by the falling and rising of them in just 
proportion to it. I have often smiled at hasty huntsmen, 
to hear them rating and cursing their dogs (that yes- 
terday were the best in England) for galloping and 
staring with their noses in the air, as if their game was 
flown ; for often does it happen that it is in vain for them 
to seek after the scent in any other place, the increasing 
weight of that fluid element having wafted it over their 
heads. Though even at such a season, (after the first 
mettle and fury of the cry is something abated) the more 
steady beagles may make a shift to pick it out by the 
particles left by the brush of her feet, (especially if there 
be not a strong, drying, exhaling wind, to hurry these 
away after the rest.) This often happens in a calm, 
gentle, steady frost, when (as I conceive) the purity, 
coldness, or perhaps the nitre, of the air, serves to fix 
and preserve a few remaining particles, that they do not 
easily corrupt. At another season, when the air is light. 


on Scent 

or growing lighter, the scent must proportionably be 
faUing or sinking ; and then every dog (though in the 
heat of his courage he pushes forward, yet) is forced to 
come back again and again, and cannot make any sure 
advances, but with his nose on the ground. When cir- 
cumstances are thus, (if there be not a storm or thunder 
impending to corrupt the scent, as I said before) you 
may expect the most curious and lasting sport ; puss 
having then a fair opportunity to shew her wiles, and 
every old or slow dog to come in for his share, to display 
his experience, the subtilty of his judgment, and the 
tenderness of his nostrils. The most terrible day for 
the poor hare is when the air is in its mean gravity, or 
cBquilihrio, tolerably moist, but inclining to grow drier, 
and fanned with the gentle breezes of the zephyrs. The 
moderate gravity buoys up the scent as high as the dog's 
breast ; the vesicles of moisture serve as so many canals, 
or vehicles, to carry the effluvia into the tubes of their 
noses ; and the gentle fannings help in such wise to 
spread and dissipate them, that every hound, even at 
eight or ten paces distant, (especially on the windy side) 
may have his proportion. 

" I advise all gentlemen, who delight in hunting, to 
provide themselves with a barometer, or weather glass. 
I am sorry to say that this instrument (though a fine 
invention) is still imperfectly understood by the philo- 
sopher, as well as the farmer ; and the index generally 
annexed to it of rain, fair, settled fair, ^c. are imperti- 
nent and delusive. If the gravity of the air is the cause 
of drought, the latter should be in proportionate degrees 
with the former ; and yet we sec the sudden or extraor- 


Variations of tlie Barometer. 

dinary rising of the mercury, a sure prognostic of an 
approaching change : we see it often continue to fall 
after the rain is over ; and we may generally observe the 
most settled fair, and the greatest rains, both happen 
when it is in a moderate height. By the accounts I 
have kept, the mercury is commonly at the highest 
marks in dull cloudy weather ; yet does it often fall a 
great deal faster before a few drops, or a dry mist, than 
an impetuous rain ; and even continue to do so after a 
hard rain is over. And what is more common than to 
see it descend many days together, to the terror of the 
husbandman, in hay or corn harvest ; when the conse- 
quence, at last, is only a few drops weighty enough to 
descend, though the air was in its utmost degree of 
gravity, and the mercury at thirty-one inches ? The 
vulgar solutions of these difficulties are insufficient and 
puzzling, and vei'y inconsistent with avowed principles ; 
and, in my humble opinion, there will never appear a 
certain and satisfactory account of these perplexing 
phenomena, till some sage naturalist shall give himself 
the trouble of a more full and complete diary than has 
yet been published ; where, together with the degrees 
of the barometer, thermometer, and hygrometer, shall 
be taken in (in distinct columns) the time of the year, 
the length of the days, the age of the moon, the situation 
of the wind, with its degrees of roughness ; the colours 
of the clouds at sun rising and setting ; the manner of 
flying, chattering, or flocking of birds, and divers other 
concurring tokens and symptoms, which may be of great 
use in conjunction with the said instruments, to settle 
and confirm our prognostications. In the mean time it 


Uncertainty of the Weather for Hunting. 

must be confessed, that this ingenious machine is of 
great use to the observant huntsman : and when he rises 
in a morning, and finds the air moist and temperate, the 
quicksilver in his glass moderately high, or gently convex, 
he has a fair invitation to prepai'e for his exercise. I 
know it is the custom with our juvenile sportsmen to fix 
the tmie, two or three days beforehand, to meet a friend, 
or to hunt in such or such a quarter ; but appointed 
matches of this kind are my aversion and abhorrence ; 
he that will enjoy the pleasure of the chase, must ask 
leave of the heavens. Hunting is a trade that is not to 
be forced ; nor can the best cry that ever was coupled 
make any thing of it, unless the air be in tune. 

" The earth also hath no small influence on this deli- 
cious pastime ; for though it sometimes happens (accord- 
ing to the observations above) that the scent is floating, 
so that you may run down a hare through water and 
mire (especially if you keep pretty close after her) without 
the trouble of stooping : yet, at such a season, the first 
fault is the loss of your game ; the perspirations of her 
body being wafted over head by the gravity of the air, 
and those of her feet being left on elements that absorb 
or confound them. 

" This last case very often happens at the going oil' 
of a frost ; the mercury is then commonly falling, and by 
consequence the scent sinking to the ground. The earth 
is naturally on such occasion fermenting ; dissolving, 
stinking, exhaling, and very porous ; so that it is impos- 
sible but most of the particles must then be corrupted, 
buried, or overcome by stronger vapours. 'Tis very 
common to heir tlic vulgar say, .s/w carries dirt in her 


Influence of the Frost 

heels : but that is not all, it being very plain, by what 
has been observed, that it is not only by the scent of the 
foot she is so eagerly pursued. 

" The mention of frost puts me in mind of a particular 
observation of my own making, that may be useful or 
diverting to my brethren of the chase. You all make it 
a great part of your pleasure to hunt out the walk of a 
hare to her seat, and doubtless you have often been sur- 
prizingly disappointed on such occasions. You have 
many times been able to hunt the same walk in one part 
of the field, and not in another ; you have hunted the 
same walk at ten or eleven, which gave not the least 
scent at seven in the morning ; and which is most pro- 
voking and perplexing of all, you have often been able 
to hunt it only at the wrong end, or backwards ; after 
many hours' wonder and expectation, cherishing your 
dogs, and cursing your fortune : you are in truth never 
so far from your game as when your hunt is warmest. 
All these accidents are only the effect of the hoar-frost, 
or very gross dew (for they never happen otherwise) and 
from thence must the miracle be accounted for. 

" I have already proved that a thaw tends to corrupt 
the particles, and have as good reason to maintain that 
frost fixes, covers, and preserves them. (Whether this 
is done by intercepting their ascent, and precipitating 
them to the ground by the gross particles of frozen dew, 
or whether by sheathing them, and protecting them from 
the penetrating air (as the good wives preserve their 
potted meats and pickles) I leave to the learned ; but 
the facts are certain, and confirmed by experience. We 
have therefore only to take notice (by the way) that the 


on Scent. 

hoar frost is very often of short continuance, changeable 
and uncertain, both as to its time and place of falling ; 
and hence all those difficulties are easily resolved. Let 
the huntsman, as soon as he is out of his bed, examme 
but the glass windows, which commonly discover whether 
any hoar frost has fallen, what time it came, and in what 
condition of continuance or gomg off it is for the present. 
If it appears to have fallen at two, three, or four in the 
morning, (suppose in the month of October, and other 
times of the year must be judged of in proportion) and 
to be going off about day break, it may then be expected 
that there will be a great difficulty or impossibility of 
trailing to her seat, because her morning retreat being 
on the top of the frozen dew, the scent is either dissolved 
or corrupted with it, or dissipated and exhaled. 'Tis 
true (after such a night) the dogs will find work in every 
field, and often hunt in full cry ; but it will be generally 
backward, and always in vain, her midnight ramblings 
(which were covered by the frost) being now open, fresh, 
and fragrant. If the said frost begins later in the morn- 
ing, after puss is seated, there is nothing to be done till 
that is gone off; and this is the reason that we often see 
the whole pack picking out a walk at nine or ten, in the 
same path where Siveet-lijjs herself could not touch at 
seven. Again, if the frost began early enough, and con- 
tinues steadily till you are gotten into the fields, you may 
then make it good to her seat, as well as at other times 
on naked ground ; though you must expect to run a 
great risk of losing her at the going off of the frost, ac- 
cording to the observations already laid down. 

" It is also to be remembered, that there is no small 
accidental difference in the very particles of scent; I 


Difference of Scent in the same Animals. 

mean, that they are stronger, sweeter, or more distin- 
guishable at one time than at another ; and that this dif- 
ference is found not only in diverse, but often in the same 
individual creature, according to the changes of the air 
or the soil, as well as of her own motions or conditions. 
That there is a different scent in other animals of the 
same species, is evident from draught hounds, which 
were formerly made use of for tracing and pursuing 
thieves and deer stealers, or rather from any common 
cur or spaniel, which will hunt out their masters, or their 
master's horse, distinctly from all others : and that it 
is the same with the hare is no less visible with the 
old beagles, which will not readily change for a fresh 
one, vmless she starts in view, or unless a fault happens 
that puts them in confusion, and inclines them in despair 
to take up with the next they can come by. 

" That the same hare will at divers times emit finer 
or grosser particles, is equally manifest to every one who 
shall observe the frequent changes in one single chase, 
the alterations that ensue on any different motion, and 
on her degrees of sinking. The coursing of a cur dog, 
or the fright from an obvious passenger, is often the 
occasion of an unexpected fault ; and after such an acci- 
dent the dogs must be cherished, and be put upon it 
again and again before they will take it and acknowledge 
it for their own game. The reason is (as I conceive) the 
change of the motion causes a change in the perspiring 
particles ; and as the spirits of the dogs are all engaged 
and attached to particles of such or such a figure, 'tis 
with difficulty they come to be sensible of, or attentive 
to, those of a different relish. You Mill pardon the ex- 


Motion the principal Cause of Scent. 

pression, if I compai*e old Jowler, in this case, to a ma- 
thematician, who is so intent on the long perplexing- 
ambages of the problem before him, that he hears not 
the clock or bell that summons him to a new employment. 

** The alterations in a yielding hare are less frequently 
the occasion of faults, because they are more gradual ; 
and, like the same rope, insensibly tapering and growing 
smaller : but that alterations there are, every dog boy 
knows by the old hounds, which still pursue with greater 
eagerness, as she is nearer her end. 

" I take motion to be the chief cause of shedding or 
discharging these scenting particles ; because she is very 
seldom perceived whilst quiet in her form, though the 
dogs are ever so near, though they leap over her, or (as 
I have often seen) even tread upon her. Indeed it some- 
times happens that she is, as we say, winded where she 
sits. But this may be the effect of that train of scent 
she left behind her in going to her chair ; or more pro- 
bably the consequence of her own curiosity, in moving 
and rising up, as I have also seeUj to peep after and 
watch the proceedings of her adversaries. However, 
we must grant, that these particles of scent, though the 
effect of motion, are not more gross and copious in pro- 
portion to the increasing swiftness of the animal; no 
more than in a watering pot, which the swifter it passes, 
the less of the falling water it bestows on the subjacent 

"It is very plain, the slower the hare moves, the 
stronger and grosser, ccetarisjiarihusy are those particles 
she leaves behind her ; which I take to be one reason 


(besides the cloathing and shielding of them from the 
penetrating air by the descending frost or dew) that the 
morning walk will give scent so much longer than the 
flight in hunting. However, it is remarkable, that these 
odorous particles gradually decay and end with her life, 
because it requires the most curious noses to lead the 
cry when she is near her last ; because she is so often 
entirely lost at the last quat : and because, if you knock 
her on the head before them, there is hardly one in the 
pack that will stop or take any notice of her. 

" The greatest art and curiosity is discovered in hunt- 
ing the/o?7, especially if she immediately steal back be- 
hind the dogs the same path she came : for it must re- 
quire the utmost skill to distinguish well the new scent 
from the old, when both are mixed, obscured, and con- 
founded with the strong perspirations of so many dogs 
and horses. Yet, this we have often seen performed by 
ready and expert hunters. However, if the dogs be 
not masters of their business, or if the air be not in due 
balance, the difficulty will be the greater. 

" The reader will observe that the remarks I have 
made are generally on the hare; which, as I have said, 
is of aU others most worthy of our speculation and en- 
quiry.. By analogy, the hunting of the deer or fox will 
be easily imderstood ; for, though the scent of these is 
generally higher, more obvious to the noses of the dogs, 
and in greater plenty whilst the particles last; yet, for 
that very reason (floating in air) they are sooner dissi- 
pated, and require a more vigorous, though less subtle, 
huntsman, as well as swifter beagles." 


Somcrvile's Notion ot Scent. 

Somervile expresses his opinion on scent in the fol- 
lowing beautiful hnes : — 

" The blood that from the heart incessant rolls 
In many a crimson tide, then here and there 
In smaller rills disparted, as it flows 
Propell'd, the serous particles evade 
Through th' open pores, and with the ambient air 
Entangling mis. As fuming vapours rise, 
And hang upon the gently purling brook. 
There by th' incumbent atmosphere compress'd. 
The panting chase grows warmer as he flies. 
And through the net-work of the skin perspires, 
Leaves a long steaming trail behind, which by 
The cooler air condens'd, remains, unless 
By some rude storm dispers'd, or rarified 
By the meridian sun's intenser heat. 
To every shrub the warm effluvia cling, 
Hang on the grass, impregnate earth and skies. 
AVith nostrils opening wide, o'er hill, o'er dale, 
The vigorous hounds pursue ; with every breath 
Inhale the grateful steam : quick pleasures sting 
Their tingling nerves, while they their thanks repay, 
And in triumphant melody confess 
The titillating joy. Thus on the air 
Depend the hunter's hope. When ruddy streaks 
At eve forebode a blustering stormy day, 
Or lowering clouds blacken the mountain's brow, 
When nipping fronts, and the keen biting blasts 
Of the dry parching east, menace the trees 
With tender blossoms teeming, kindly spare 
Thy sleeping pack." 

Beckford says, " I cannot agree with Mr. Somervile, 
in thinking scent depends on the ah' only. It depends 
also on the soil. Without doubt, the best scent is that 
which is occasioned by the efHuvia, as he calls it, or par- 


Beckford's Opinion 

tides of scent, which are constantly perspiring from the 
game as it runs, and are strongest and most favourable 
to the hound when kept, by the gravity of the air, to the 
height of his breast ; for then it neither is above his 
reach, nor is it necessary he should stoop for it. At such 
times, scent is said to lie breast-high. Experience tells 
us, that difference of soil occasions difference of scent ; 
and on the richness of soil and the moderate moisture of 
it, does scent also depend, I think, as well as on the air. 
At the time leaves begin to fall, and before they are 
rotted, we know that the scent lies ill in cover. This 
alone would be a sufficient proof that scent does not 
depend on the air only. A difference of scent is also 
occasioned by difference of motion : the faster the game 
goes, the less scent it leaves. When game has been 
ridden after, and hurried on by imprudent sportsmen, 
or has been coursed by sheep dogs, the scent is less 
favourable to hounds ; one reason of which may be, that 
the particles of scent are then more dissipated. 

" I believe it is very difficult to ascertain what scent 
exactly is : I have known it alter very often in the same 
day. I believe, however, it depends chiefly on two 
things, — "the condition the ground is in, and the tem- 
perature of the air," both of which, I apprehend, should 
be moist, without being wet. When both are in this 
condition, the scent is then perfect; and vice versa, when 
the ground is hard, and the air dry, there seldom will 
be any scent. It scarce ever lies with a north or an east 
wind : a southerly wind without rain, and a westerly 
wind that is not too rough, are the most favourable. 
Storms in the air are great enemies to scent, and seldom 


fail to take it entirely away. A fine sunshiny day is not 
often a good hunting day ; hut what the French ca\\ jour 
des dames, warm without sun, is generally a perfect one : 
there are not many such in a whole season. In some 
fogs I have known the scent lie high ; in others, not at 
all ; depending, I believe, on the quarter the wind is 
then in. I have known it lie very high in a mist, when 
not too wet ; but if the wet hangs much on the boughs 
and bushes, it falls on the scent and deadens it. When 
the dogs roll, the scent, I have frequently observed, 
seldom lies, for what reason I know not ; but, with per- 
mission, if they smell strong when they first come out of 
the kennel, the proverb is in their favour ; and that smell 
is a prognostic of good luck. When the cobwebs hang 
to the bushes, there is seldom much scent. During a 
white frost the scent lies high ; as it also does when the 
frost is quite gone : there is a time, just as it is going off, 
when it never lies : it is a critical minute for hounds, in 
which their game is frequently lost. In a great dew the 
scent is the same. In heathy countries, where the game 
brushes as it goes along, scent seldom fails. Where the 
ground carries, the scent is bad, for a very evident reason, 
which hare-hunters, who pursue their game over greasy 
fallows and through dirty roads, have great cause to 
complain of. A Avet night frequently produces good 
chases, as then the game never like to run the covers or 
the roads. It has often been remarked, that scent lies 
best in the richest soils ; and countries which are favour- 
able to horses are seldom so to hounds. I have also ob- 
served, that in some particular places scent never lies." 

Q b 


At first view, Somervile and Beckford would appear 
at variance on the subject of scent; but, in fact, they are 
both correct. Scent is entirely under the influence of 
the atmosphere ; yet it is equally true that it varies, ac- 
cording to the nature of the land, in the manner pointed 
out by Beckford. On Friday, February 3rd, 182G, I 
met the Cheshire hounds at Ravensmoor, near Nantwich, 
and a fox was found in a neighbouring cover, called 
Radnor Gorse. The hounds went away with uncommon 
speed ; and sly renard having gone oft* in a line for 
Ravensmoor, turned to the left to Beechhouse. The 
fox took the direction of Bar Bridge, j^assing over a fine 
grass country, where the scent was very good, and the 
hounds continued the pursuit with so much speed, that 
none but good workmen were able to keep in sight of 
them. I never recollect seeing hounds carry a better 
head or go faster. The fox ultimately turned to the left 
towards the village of Bunbury, where the land was 
higher and sandy, and where the scent immediately died 
away. Yet, I am inclined to think that this circumstance 
was owing as well to atmospheric influence as to the 
alteration in the soil, as rain came on immediately after- 
wards. On rich pasture land, the scent will be much 
better than on poor pasture land— for the following 
reason :— the herbage on the former being more luxuri- 
iint, more plentiful, and possessing a more adhesive 
quahty, the floating particles of scent arc thus more 
numerously and longer detained, and consequently afford 
a superior scent to the hounds. Nevertheless, the 
degree of scent is, beyond all question, regulated entirely 
by the atmosphere :— when the latter if favourable (as 


Influence of the Wind on Scent. 

with a soft southern wind, for instance) the hounds will 
run breast high over good land, and on such occasions 
the scent will be found much superior even on the worst 
land. When the scent is most propitious to the sports- 
man's hopes, it would seem to float for a considerable 
time at that precise elevation as to enable the hound to 
run with his utmost speed, (as Beckford has noticed) : 
the particles of scent not only adhere to the herbage and 
other obstacles with which they come in contact on the 
immediate line of the chase, but float and fill up a con- 
siderable space, as is clearly proved by many of the 
hounds very frequently running breast high at an evident 
distance to the windward of the line of the chase. On 
the contrary, when the scent is bad (as with a cold, 
harsh, easterly wind) it can be made out (if at all) only 
by thorough line-hunting hounds ; while those dogs, 
which, under other circumstances, ran so brilliantly, are 
not able to recognise it. Experience convinces every 
sportsman that, over fallows or beaten roads, scent never 
lies well : the reason is evident : — there is no herbage or 
other attractive objects to detain the floating particles, 
and the consequence is, that if the hounds do not follow 
on over such places immediately after the chase has 
passed, they are not able to hunt — the scent has been 
dissipated. Scent will continue, precisely according to 
the air or atmosphere, for a longer or a shorter period. 
Whenever the chase brushes against a number of ob- 
stacles, as when running amongst heath, for instance, 
the scent cannot be otherwise than excellent; (unless 
the atmosphere be vei'y unfavourable indeed ;) nor can 
a fox stand up long before the hounds under such cir- 
cumstances : renard seems conscious of the advantage 


Erroneous Notions respecting the Scent of diSferent Animals. 

of his enemies in such case, as he will avoid the heath as 
much as possible, and perseveringly continue his course 
along the roads or any beaten track he can meet with. 

That the scent of the fox does not continue so long as 
that of the hare, is a mistaken notion ; and has arisen 
most likely from harriers being generally more tender 
nosed than fox hounds, and are thence enabled to speak 
to the scent after a considerable lapse of time — in pro- 
portion of course to the quality of the olfactory organs. 

Also, it may be further remarked, that, while it has 
been the custom amongst sportsmen to consider the scent 
of the fox stronger, but more evanescent, than that of 
the hare, it has, at the same time, been the general 
opinion, that the scent of the stag was the strongest of 
the three, and the most agreeable to hounds. I have no 
hesitation in supposing that the scent issuing from so 
large an animal as the stag must be much greater in 
volume (if I may be allowed the expression) than the 
odorous exhalations from the two much smaller animals 
already noticed ; yet, I think it will appear, when the 
matter is duly investigated, that the general notions 
respecting scent have been inconsiderately adopted, and 
have arisen as much, or perhaps more, from the olfactory 
organs of the hound as from the difference in the scent 
of the animals which constitute the objects of chase. At 
all events, I feel a perfect conviction (which indeed I 
have already expressed) that the scent of the fox is not 
more evanescent than that of the hare, if so much, and 
that hounds which could recognise the scent of a hare 
after the lapse of a considerable period, would also speak 
to that of the fox in the same manner, or perhaps more 


Wolf Hunting in France, iiit/i a Description of the 
Hounds and Equipage for that Purpose. — A Wolf 

It is generally admitted that the English are the best 
sportsmen in the world ; yet it cannot be denied that the 
foundation of their present superior knowledge of the 
chase was imported from the Continent. The Saxons 
taught the Britons to pursue the chase on scientific 
principles ; the Normans afterwards introduced a much 
improved system ; which has been gradually advanced 
in this country till it has reached its present comparative 
perfection. However, in order to enable the reader to 
form an opinion of the manner in which the chase is at 
present pursued by our Continental neighbours, I shall 
here introduce a few pages from the late Colonel Thorn- 
ton's Sporting Tour through France. 

" Before we proceed on this subject, it may, perhaps, 
be necessary to observe, that the hunting of the wolf 
being entirely confined to the countries of the continent, 
and particularly to France, many of the technical terms 
employed in this interesting sport are of such a nature, 
that it is impossible to render them into the English 
language. The original expressions have, therefore, in 
some cases, been retained in the following pages. 

Terms emplo?/ed in Hunting the Wolf. — Wolves arc 
divided, according to their age, into cub wolves, old 


Terms employed in Wolf Hunting. 

wolves, and Avolves ; their age may be discovered by 
their feet, and their footsteps are called the track of the 

When the wolf goes a gentle pace without hurrying 
himself, he is said to go with confidence. 

When he goes in quest of food, it is said, he is seeking 
food, he is going to feed on carrion, he seized the car- 
rion, he glutted himself with carrion. 

In the season of copulation, wolves are said to be at 
heat. Some sportsmen have employed the term rut; 
but that can only be applied to the stag, the deer, and 
the wild boar. 

When the wolf has covered the female, it is said, the 
wolf has coupled, the wolf has covered or lined the she 

When they have produced whelps, they are called a 
litter of young wolves. It commonly consists of five, six 
and seven ; and never of less than three. 

We say, the head, the teeth, the skin of the wolf. 

The nipples of a she wolf are called teats. 

The places where they have scratched up the earth 
are called dechmissures, and we say the wolf has torn up 
such a place. 

The place where he lies is called his kennel. 

We say the footsteps of a wolf; some have called them 
the track. When we see the wolf of which we are in 
chase, we cry — Velelau, Velclau, liarluu chicns, harlou, 
veleci aller, i^eleci aller. 

We say the howling of wolves : to howl for wolves is 
to entice them to you, that you may shoot them in the 


Manner of distinguishing a Male from a Female Wolf, &a 

To place greyhounds in stations is to post them in a 
situation between two thickets, when you expect the 
wolf to leave one of them and to go into the other. 
. Manner of clistingidshing a He Wolf from a She 
Wolf by the Feet. — The he wolf has a larger and thicker 
foot than the she wolf. When the wolf is young, his 
foot expands as he walks ; when he grows old, his foot 
is narrower, both before and behind ; his claws are thick, 
long, and close ; his heel thick and broad, and the fore- 
part of the foot thicker than the hmder part. When 
the wolf goes with assurance ; that is, when he walks his 
ordinary pace, he commonly puts the hind foot into the 
step or track of the fore foot. It is easy to perceive 
this in wet weather, or in snow ; but when he goes at a 
trot, the hind foot keeps at the distance of three fingers 
from the fore foot. The she wolf has a longer and nar- 
rower foot than the male ; her heel is smaller and closer, 
and her claws are not so strong. By taking notice of 
these differences, the sportsman may know whether he 
is in the track of a he or a she wolf. 

The Time in ivhich Wolves are in Heat. — It is com- 
monly in winter that these animals are in heat ; but 
some she wolves are not in heat so early as others. The 
old ones are more early, and the young ones later. In 
general, they are not in heat for the first time till they 
are nearly two years old, or between twenty-one and 
twenty-two months ; because, as the mothers are in heat 
again the same year they litter, the young ones being- 
then only nine or ten months old, have not attained a 
sufficient growth to be in heat ; so that they are not in 
that state till the second heat which comes upon the 


The Littering of Wolves. 

mother after their birth. The she wolf produces her 
first fitter about the conchision of her second year : it is 
always in the most inclement season of the year that 
these beasts are in heat — the old ones till nearly the 
month of February, and the young ones till towards the 
end of that month. The she wolves are extremely coy 
before they yield to the advances of the males ; and if 
several of the latter happen to meet when they have 
found a female, they fight for her with the utmost ob- 
stinacy, and the strongest wins the prize. The jealousy 
of these animals is extreme ; and is carried to such a 
height, that, if by accident a he wolf, after lining a 
female, is met alone with her by several males, they 
will attack and tear him in pieces. 

The Time when She Wolves Litter. — When the she 
wolf is big, she commonly goes three months and a half, 
or more — that is, upwards of a hundred days. They 
litter earlier or later, according to the time they were in 
heat. Their most numerous litters consist of six or 
seven ; but never of less than three ; and there are 
always more males than females. When the she wolf is 
about to litter, she seeks some large ditch in an unfre- 
quented place, or some hole at a distance from any road, 
into which she retires. She even seeks to avoid the 
presence of the male ; because, if he were present when 
she brings forth her young, he would not fail to devour 
them. If, however, the female happens soon afterwards 
to die, the male, appearing to be actuated by paternal 
affection, feeds the yoimg cubs, defends them against 
every enemy, and when they have acquired a little 
strength, he conducts them into large corn fields^ and 


The Places where Wolves Litter. 

Other situations not far from the forest or thickets. He 
there places them in security, while he prowls in quest 
of food. He carries to them all he can catch, such 
as sheep or other animals ; but he first devours them 
himself, and on his return to his cubs, he disgorges the 
half-digested food, Mhich is swallowed by the cubs. 
When his prey consists only of puppies, or fowls, he 
carries it off alive : at first he gives these animals to his 
cubs to play with, and then instructs them how to kill 
them. When he and she wolves have young ones, they 
are extremely alert in avoiding the snares that may be 
laid for them ; and when they hear the report of a gun, 
or the cry of dogs, they decamp as speedily as possible, 
and carry away with them all their family. 

Manner of discovering the Places where the She 
Wolves have Littered. — In the month of August, or 
September, the cubs having acquired a little strength, 
begin to walk about, and to sport among the thickets. 
They never remove far from the woods, because there 
is then no corn in the plains. In looking for them, you 
should go into the thickest part of the woods, and the 
closest thickets ; and, in particular, take notice of all the 
places near which there are marshes. The females 
usually seek those situations, as well for the convenience 
of retreat, as to allay the burning thirst caused by the 
season, and the food on which they subsist. It is com- 
monly in the morning and evening that the young wolves 
go to the marshes. You may take young dogs to the 
spot, but you ought to have one in particular that is well 
trained to that kind of search : in beating the wood, he 
will not fail to discover the wolf; he will even pursue 


Of Training Dogs to Hunt the Wolf, 

him, rouse him, and follow him to his haunt : M'hen there, 
you should caress and encourage him, to induce him 
afterwards to go and pursue him alone. The move- 
ments of the old dog will animate the younger ; you 
should, therefore, sometimes send him forward to excite 
the others, and afterwards you may call him behind, to 
see whether the young dogs are capable to go by them- 
selves. They should be caressed a good deal the first 
time they manifest timidity. You should go before them, 
to teach them to pursue by themselves ; and as the young 
wolves will not easily quit their situations, you must 
make the dogs return to the charge, and follow the 
scent ; and then, after having encouraged them, call 
them off. 

To train young dogs to hunt the wolf, the sportsman 
must proceed in the following manner : — He should take 
them to the wood every two days, towards the places 
which he supposes to be frequented by the wolves. He 
cannot fail to discover them, because the he or she wolf 
always goes in the morning to the cubs, and then retires 
into other thickets to deceive the hunters : it is then that 
you have an excellent opportunity of employing blood 
hounds to advantage. The thickets chosen by the 
wolves for their retreat are easily known : near them are 
always some fragments of their prey, by which they are 
betrayed, as bones of horses, skeletons of dogs and other 
animals. It is, besides, easy to remark whether the 
grass about the spot is trodden, which is a sign that the 
young wolves have come thither to lie down. 

Eqidpage for Hunting the Wolf. — Having described 
the M'olf, and the manner of discovering him in a general 


and the Kind best adapted for the Purpose. 

way, it is necessary to enter into the details of the chase ; 
but it may not be amiss previously to say something of 
the proper equipage for that purpose. 

In this respect it is not necessary to go to any great 
expence, as twenty-five or thirty hounds are sufficient. 
They ought to be of a good size, to have a grey coat, 
and to be marked with red about the eyes and on the 
cheeks : by these marks you may discover their greater 
or less degree of eagerness in the chase. You ought, 
likewise, to have six or eight leashes of large, choice 
greyhounds, and some good whelps. They encourage 
each other, and attack the wolf with the greater vigour. 
A good whipper-in is also highly necessary ; two attend- 
ants for the blood hounds, two for the hounds, and one 
to slip the greyhounds. 

Your blood hounds for hunting the wolf cannot be too 
good ; they ought to be bold, lively, and full of ardour. 
When they possess all these qualities, you derive from 
them a two-fold advantage ; for, besides that which you 
enjoy in the chase, they hkewise serve to train other 
dogs. A good sportsman ought to be prudent as to the 
service he requires of his dogs, and he should be very 
careful of them, for the chase of the wolf is more fatiouinf 
to the blood hounds than any other kind, the wolf being 
naturally crafty and mistrustfuL From the moment that 
he perceives they are after him, he is constantly going ; 
and when he finds himself pursued, he changes his abode, 
and leads his pursuers a very fatiguing chase. It is, 
therefore, advisable to spare the blood hounds, and to 
make them serve alternately. A day of rest gives them 
fresh ardour, and enables the sportsmen to liunt with 
more satisfaction. 


Of Trying for the Wolf. 

The Search for the Wolf. — The wolf is tried for in 
various ways, according to the difference of the seasons. 
If it be in winter, you should go to the wood some time 
before sunrise, because that is about the time when the 
wolves repair to it. In summer there is no occasion to 
go so early, because those animals frequently stay among 
the corn, and do not return to the wood till the day is 
advanced ; therefore, without being in too great a hurry, 
it will be sufficient to beat twice along the skirts of the 
thicket towards the corn ; and, if you meet with nothing, 
it will be advisable, on your return, to beat the contrary 

There is a considerable difference between trying for 
the stag and the wolf. The former remains a long time 
in the thickets ; sometimes he does not even leave them 
to pass the night in the open fields : but the conduct of 
the wolf is exactly the reverse. Hunger, it is said, 
drives him out of the wood ; and as he subsists entirely 
by carnage, he frequently approaches farms, villages, and 
even towns, and seizes whatever falls in his way. If, by 
accident, he remains a considerable time in a thicket 
without quitting it, even during the night, it is only when 
he has taken a deer, or some other animal that he is 
occupied in devouring. 

When the assistant huntsman shall have arrived with 
his limier, or blood hound, at the place containing the 
object of search, he must loosen the leash, and make his 
dog advance before him more than half the length of it, 
continually caressing him and saying — Va outre Ribaut 
hau mon valet, hau lo lo lo lo, iieleci, veleci alle mon 
petit. It is well frequently to repeat these w^ords, because 


Hounds not eager in the Pursuit of the Wolf. 

nothing more encourages and animates the dog in the 
pursuit. You must take good care that the blood hound 
may not take the scent of some wolf that has entered the 
forest by some ravine or great road ; and when you 
perceive that the dog is about to acknowledge the scent, 
and that he puts his nose either to the branches or the 
tufts of grass, you must encourage him; for dogs are 
naturally not very eager after the wolf; and I have re- 
marked, that they are not very eager in quest of him. 
Besides, the scent of the wolf does not continue more 
than two or three hours ; and to be enabled to unkennel 
him, he should not have passed more than two hours ; 
otherwise the blood hounds will scarcely be able to hunt 
up to him, especially if it be on a beaten dry road. For 
he leaves more scent behind him when he runs upon the 
grass or among the bushes, because he touches whatever 
he meets, as well with his body as his feet, and when the 
scent is protected from the wind or sun ; and this cir- 
cumstance assists the blood hounds in the pursuit. 

When the huntsman perceives that his dog has got 
upon the scent of a wolf, he should encourage him in 
these terms : — Wliat! is he there boy? — haii Vamy apres 
veleci y d'lt vrai, and he should frequently repeat them 
in order to encourage the dog, which he must continue 
to follow, either by the side of the way or hi the faux 
fuyant. Too much attention cannot be used on this 
occasion, because there is always reason to apprehend, 
lest the scent should grow too weak, and lest the blood 
hound should relinquish it at the first cross-way to which 
the wolf may have betaken himself. It is to be observed, 
that when the wolf passes a cross-way, he always stops 



Habits of the Wolf, and 

there for some time, either to clung or to make water 
against some bush of broom or furze, or a tuft of grass. 
He then immediately scratches up a spot on the surface 
of the ground four feet in extent, tearing up the turf 
backwards with his claws. He then continues his course, 
and sometimes conceals himself at a considerable dis- 
tance ; sometimes he likewise endeavours to give his 
pursuers the slip, and instead of following the road takes 
another, and turns toward the thickest part of the wood, 
with a view to enter it. For this purpose he takes the 
first double he comes to, or some favourable passage, 
which hapi^ens principally when the earth is moist. It 
is at such times that the sportsman should be careful to 
train the hound to the scent, at about half the length of 
the line, and to encourage his blood hound more and 
more. If it be still early in the day, he may follow the 
drag with little noise, and withdraw secretly to proceed 
before. He should observe, that during this time, the 
hound may surprize the wolf either by some JauxfuT/anf, 
or by some glade, by which he may have penetrated 
into the recesses of the wood ; for wolves have different 
paces according as they are more or less hungry. When 
driven by hunger, they are almost incessantly on the foot, 
and proceed forward till they have found something to 
eat : but when they have glutted themselves, they fre- 
quently retire into the first thicket they come to, provided 
they find favourable places for their kennel ; as hollies, 
fern, and other shrubs. 

If the sportsman be at the forest on a hunting day, 
he will content himself with ascertaining whether the 
wolf has entered the thicket. He will endeavour to dis- 


Method of training a young Blood Hound to hunt him. 

cover the little avenue oi' glade by which he may have 
entered : he will caress his blood hound, and afterwards 
break the branches at the entrance of the thicket. After 
he has convinced himself that he has discovered the 
track of the wolf, he will return to the company to make 
his report ; but if he had no other intention than to 
exercise his dog, or if it is a considerable time since he 
dislodged the wolf, he may, as soon as he has reconnoi- 
tred, return to the inclosure of broken boughs to dis- 
cover the traces, then push on and dislodge the wolf, 
and follow the drag to the haunt, caressing his blood 
hound and continually using the above-mentioned terms. 
If the blood hound be young, his ardour will abate on 
approaching the haunt, because the scent of the wolf 
naturally inspires dogs with terror, and there are very 
few which dare venture to follow him by themselves. 
It is, therefore, necessary to speak to him a good deal, 
in order to animate and embolden him to pursue ; and 
he should be much caressed on the track. With regard 
to the haunt, I shall observe here, that wolves frequently 
change them, according to the diiierence of the season ; 
for instance, in summer they choose an open place among 
the grass, on which the sun shines a little ; but in winter 
they repair to the recesses of the woods or thickets, 
among heath or fern. They seldom fix their abode 
beneath very high trees, excepting they find there very 
thick bushes, or abundance of fern or rushes. 

In what Manner it may he discovered that the Blood 
Hound has got Scent of a Wolf. — It is very difficult to 
get sight of a wolf, on account of his great swiftness : 
he even scarcely leaves behind him any traces, excepting 

11 2 


Mode of ascertaining whether the Dog is on the right Scent. 

in winter, in a white frost ; or in summer, when there is 
much dust. In all other circumstances you may be said 
to proceed with no great certainty ; and if a person has 
not had long experience in the chase, he frequently takes 
many a step in vain. There are, however, certain signs, 
by means of which you may discover the object of the 
blood hound's movements, and consequently distinguish 
whether it is a wolf or some other animal of which the 
dog has got the scent. If it be a wolf, he will not fail to 
go and smell at the branches and grass the wolf has 
touched, and will immediately proceed in pursuit of him. 
If the wolf makes a good impression on the ground, and 
the dog has any scent, you will see him pursue briskly, 
provided you take care to encourage him, from time to 
time, on the drag. But if the wolf passed very early, 
and you are not on the spot in good time, the blood 
hound will lose the scent, particularly if the wolf pro- 
ceeds in a right line, and is gone to a considerable 
distance ; for a dog must have an excellent nose to dis- 
cover a wolf that has passed longer than two hours and 
a half, or three hours ; and he is liable to change if 
there be any deer in the thicket, or if he have not been 
exclusively trahied to wolf hunting. When the sports- 
man perceives, by the manner of the dog, that it is the 
track of a wolf which he has discovered, he must en- 
deavour to find out whether the animal is alone or in 
company. They generally go in pairs : it is only in 
seasonable weather that he can discover their number 
and quality, by examining their footsteps with attention, 
conformably to what I have already said on that subject, 
in treating of the difference between the foot of the he 
and she wolf. 


Manner of placing Relays of Dogs. 

Manner of making a Report of the Discovery of a 
Wolf — It appears that it is not very easy to distinguish 
the track of wolves from every other animal : a sports- 
man should possess much experience, and be capable of 
just observation, to be able to make an accurate report. 

A report is commonly made in the following manner : 

I believe I have discovered the track of one or two 
wolves, or of a he and a she wolf, or of several, according 
to the indications one has oljserved; they came from 
such a thicket, or they went in quest of food towards 
such a village ; they killed so many deer, which I found 
in following them ; and they afterwards repaired to such 
a thicket. I continued the search ; and as I imagine 
that their direct road lies from such a thicket, in which 
I have reason to suppose they are, to such other thicket, 
there is a fine opportunity for driving them into the open 
country, and an advantageous situation for placing grey- 

Manner of placing Greijlionnds, — The greyhounds 
for the wolf are divided into three classes — the levriers 
iVestric, levriers compagnons, likewise called the flank 
greyhounds, and levriers de teste. There ought, in 
general, to be two leashes of each kind, each leash being 
composed of two or three greyhounds. The levriers 
d'estric are first placed by the side of a thicket, near the 
spot at which you imagine the wolf will break. These 
two leashes should be about five or six hundred paces 
distant from each other, more or less, according to the 
situation of the place. Each leash should be supported 
by a horseman, who should take care to conceal himself, 
with the dogs, on the skirts of the wood down Mind, to 



Method of killing the Wolf. 

push the wolf when the dogs are let loose, and to make 
him take to the open country. At five or six hundred 
paces from the former, and about half way between the 
two thickets, must be posted the flank greyhomads : the 
two relays of these are placed opposite to each other, 
for the wolf to pass between them. Attention nmst be 
paid to keep these still more concealed than the former, 
lest the wolf should perceive them ; and the valets must 
attend, to loose them as soon as the wolf is ready to 
pass. The levriers de teste shovdd be placed near the 
thicket which the wolf is expected to make for ; and, 
when he is observed to approach, pursued by the other 
dogs, the levriers de teste should then be brought forward, 
and let loose upon the wolf. The latter being stronger, 
and more furious than the others, soon bring the wolf to 
bay : the valets should then halloo up the blood hovmds, 
and hasten to the wolf as speedily as possible. As soon 
as the dogs hold him to bay, the valets must take care 
to provide themselves with short thick sticks, to thrust 
down the wolf's throat the moment they are within reach ; 
because that animal never quitting any thing that he 
once seizes upon, the stick which is presented to him 
protects the dogs from the wounds he might otherwise 
inflict. The huntsmen must then employ their hunting- 
knives, observing the precaution, when they approach 
to stab the Avolf, to have one hand always at the point of 
the knife, lest they should hurt the dogs ; as I have fre- 
quently seen dogs, in the hurry, maimed, in consequence 
of the neglect of it. When a favourable moment for stab- 
bing (or houghing) the wolf presents itself, the knife must 
be thrust through his body, near the shoulder. 


Of finding and hunting the Wolf. 

Manner of Hunting the Wolf ivltk Hounds. — To 
succeed in this mode of hunting, the greyhounds must, 
above all things, be placed in the manner as before de- 
scribed. You must then post on the side of the thicket 
at which you wish to prevent the wolves from issuing, 
ten or a dozen men, each provided with a rattle, to be 
employed on the occasion. Care must be taken to 
station them at the distance of sixty paces from each 
other, more or less, according to the extent of the thicket. 
When every thing is ready, the leader gives the order ; 
and the dogs are immediately taken to the brisecs to be 
let loose. The whipper-in holds the dogs to the brisees 
in the thicket, to make them take the scent ; and then 
conducts them along the track, towards the spot where 
he supposes the wolves reside, continually encouraging 
them by the cries of hala ila la tayau veleci aller. He 
blows his horn from time to time, to animate them in the 
pursuit. The noise of the dogs will perhaps make the 
wolf quit his kennel long before they come up ; but 
sometimes he waits till they are close to him before he 
breaks. If the huntsman perceives him, he must then 
call to his dogs in these terms — Velelau, velelaii, Jiarlou, 
harlou, veleci aller. He will then sound his horn, to 
make them follow the traces, and then cry — Harlou 
chiens, harlou veleci aller. When the dogs have taken 
to the traces, they will not fail to rouse the wolf, and 
pursue him with eagerness : the huntsman will then 
sound his horn, to animate them still more. 

The wolf thus pursued will, perhaps, hang cover 
before he breaks it, that he may obtain the advantage 
of the wind in his flight ; but the men stationed to keep 


Method of inducing Ihe Wolf to break Cover. 

him in will make use of their rattles, the sound of which 
will head him, and make him go off without having the 
advantage of the wind. While the wolf is thus in sus- 
pense concerning the way he shall take, he is briskly 
pushed by the dogs, supported by the huntsman, who 
will incessantly keep crying — Ha yfidt la chiens, yfuit 
la ha ha. He will then .sound two blasts, and again 
begin hallooing — Hou veleci aller, veleei aller. At length 
the wolf finding himself pressed by the dogs, the cries 
of the hunters, and the noise of those stationed to keep 
him in, resolves to escape by the place where he hears 
no noise, which is precisely the part next to the open 
country. He stops a moment at the skirts of the wood, 
to observe whether he can see any person, and he imme- 
diately sets off to cross the plain. He is suffered to 
advance about one hundred paces, when the levriers 
d'estric, and afterwards the others, are let loose upon 
him, on the plan already mentioned. Two horsemen, 
at the same time, ride after him, to oblige him to con- 
tinue his course, as it is of great consequence that he 
should be kept in it : but for this he would escape, as 
the attempt to run down a wolf is scarcely ever made. 
To command success in the latter case, you ought to be 
perfectly sure of your relays — that the dogs were trained 
exclusively to the chase of the wolf — that there were 
neither deer nor boars in the forest. This kind of chase 
would, besides, be long and fatiguing, because the wolf 
is rarely blown : he runs a long time, never ahead, almost 
constantly viewing him for six or seven hours together. 
The greyhounds placed in ambush greatly abridge this 
chase, and likewise render it more amusing and certain 
to the spectators. 


Forms observed at the Death of the Wolf. 

As soon as a wolf is taken, he should be given up to 
the hounds which come up almost immediately ; because, 
otherwise, the greyhounds would attack the hounds. It 
is therefore advisable that they should be taken off im- 
mediately and coupled, to return and go in quest of 
another, for it is easy to take several wolves ui one day. 
When this is intended to be done, each should resume 
his former position : as for those who are stationed to 
prevent the animal's escape, they must not, on any 
account, quit their post, till they receive orders to that 

When the wolf is expiring his death is announced by 
three loud blasts of the horn. The huntsmen alight, 
and caress the dogs, to excite them to worry him. It is 
the duty of the whipper-in to cut off the animal's right 
foot, which he presents to the commander of the com- 

Manner of Chasing the She Wolf and the Young 
Cubs. — Nearly the same things are observed in the chase 
of the female as of the male — the same method of pur- 
suit, and the same cries are employed ; but the young 
wolves are chased with less precaution, and are attacked 
even in their caverns by the dogs. As soon as the dogs 
have discovered them they are seized with fear, and run 
from one side to the other, without ever quitting the 
thicket. The whipper-in must follow and encourage the 
dogs by three notes of his horn, and must speak briskly 
to them in these terms — Harlou, harlouy hou velcci: 
this gives the dogs fresh spirits, courage, and strength, 
and they rush upon the young wolves with renewed 
ardour. When they have overtaken them, the hunts- 


The Blooding of 

man despatches them with his hunting knife, always 
observing the precaution mentioned above, lest the dogs 
should sustain any injury. 

If there are in the pack any young dogs which have 
not before been in the chase, they might be made to 
begin with chasing the young wolves, in company with 
old steady hound dogs : they would soon learn, and be 
able to hunt. In their beginnings they ought to be ani- 
mated and encouraged by frequent caresses with the 
hand ; and when the young wolves are taken, they should 
be made to approach, and to ruffle on them, and pull 

When the chase is over, a retreat is sounded, all the 
dogs are collected, and the wolves that have been taken 
are carried away. 

The Blooding of the Wolf.— The blooding of the 
wolf differs very much from that of stag, deer, and other 
beasts, which are given to the dogs on the spot. The 
scent of the wolf is extremely strong, and the dogs 
would not taste the flesh if care were not taken to dis- 
guise it. I have frequently remarked, that dogs which 
manifested abundance of ardour in pursuit, durst not 
venture to approach the animal to trample on him when 
killed. Nothing but great precaution, and repeated 
caresses, can overcome their aversion to the flesh of the 
wolf. The following is the manner in which it is pre- 
pared : — 

The wolf must first be skinned, and the entrails taken 
out ; the head is then cut off, but the skin and ears are 
left upon it ; the quarters are then cut ofl', and are baked 
with the body in a very hot oven. While the whole is 


Hounds to Wolf. 

rousting, small pieces of bread are put into one or more 
tubs, into which are thrown the quarters of the wolf, cut 
into pieces, as soon as they come out of the oven. Upon 
this is then poured a large pot full of boiling water, 
into which, while heating, have been put three or four 
pounds of grease ; and the whole is well stirred and 
mixed. When the whole is soaked, empty it out of the 
tubs upon a piece of sacking made for the purpose, and 
stir it again, that the mixture, which is still warm, may 
be in a state fit to be eaten by the dogs. When every 
thing is ready for the blooding of the pack, the whij)per- 
in receives the switches from the hands of the first valet. 
He presents two to the commander of the company, who 
gives one to the master to whom he belongs. The 
switches being distributed, the kennel is opened, and 
the huntsmen sound the tune customary on other occa- 
sions of this kind. At the same time, the skin and head 
of the wolf are held before the dogs, that they may be- 
come accustomed to that animal. After eating the mash, 
the roasted body of the wolf, to which the head has been 
affixed, is presented to them, at the distance of thirty 
paces. The best way of making them eat it, is to shew 
it them at the point of a fork, and to animate them with 
words, and the sound of the horn, and they will not fail 
to fall upon it with eagerness. 

The foregoing is the French manner of preparing the 
animal for winter — the method employed in summer is 
somewhat different : — The quarters are roasted and cut 
in pieces, as before ; but, instead of water boiled with 
grease, two or three pails full of milk, into which have 
been put a quantity of very small pieces of bread, or rye 


French Hounds inferior to the Enghsh Hounds. 

flour, are poured over them : the whole is mixed toge- 
ther, and this mess is given the dogs in the same manner 
as the other. They eat it wilhngly, and it is extremely 
refreshing for them. The body is afterwards given them 
in the manner before described. 

Thus much for the French mode of treatment : their 
hounds will not bear any comparison with those of the 
English breed. The former are deficient in animation, 
and possess a very small share of mettle ; while, on the 
contrary, such is the blood of the well-bred English 
hound, that he would instantly break up any wolf on 
seizing it." 

The introduction of the fowling-piece in wolf hunting 
does not, however, well harmonize with the ideas of an 
English sportsman; though it is very freely used in 
France, as will appear from the following description of 
a run with a wolf: — Colonel Thornton, after observing 
that they threw off at four o'clock, (whether morning or 
evening is not stated) thus proceeds : — 

*' We soon roused a wolf, of which we had a view for 
five or six miles ; however, there was no probability of 
killing but by shooting him, and this was not easily done, 
as the cover was extremely thick in underwood and 
heath, the avenues having been entirely neglected since 
the revolution. 

I heard several shots in different parts, and some of 
them so near together, that I did not suppose them to 
be at the same animal : however, the cry returned, and 
I faintly saw something rush near me. The, hunters 
then came up, and informed me that they had shot at a 
wolf; and one of the party said, in an exulting tone, he 
was confident that he had mortally wounded him. 


Description of a Wolf Chase. 

I had twenty-one balls in my seven-barrelled gun, and 
trusted, if I could get a shot the least clear of cover, I 
should wound the game. We then took our respective 
stations in the allees, all agreeing (as is necessary) to 
shoot forwards. In about half an hour I heard the cry 
no more, and therefore dashed on at a good rate for two 
miles, when I heard the hounds but very faintly. Having 
placed myself in what I thought a likely pass, I heard a 
rustling, and soon discovered an animal listening, about 
sixty yards distant. Agitated as I was at this moment, 
I could not decide whether I should fire. I was certain 
of hitting with some of the balls ; but, as the cry con- 
tinued to advance, I resolved to wait, and in a little time 
mij gentleman passed the avenue: he seemed jaded, and 
was evidently hit in the hinder part. I then fired ; but 
whether successfully or not I could not tell. Running 
up to the boughs where he had appeared, I found them 
cut ; and, on carefully examining the range of the balls, 
I conceived that I had certainly wovmded him — in con- 
sequence of which, I remounted my horse, and tallyhoed 
so as to make the forest ring. In about ten minutes a 
couple and a half of my hounds appeared, nearly toge- 
ther. Caustic and Consul, grand-son and grand-daughter 
of Merkin, of true Conqueror blood, seemed the most 
vermin. They flew counter down the avenue, but I 
hallooed them back ; and, at this instant, three couple 
and a half out of my four came in, and were immediately 
followed by Vixen, who appeared full as vicious. I caped 
them, and they went off' at a rattling pace after the wolf; 
but still they were almost mute. 

Having galloped on to the next avenue, I was joined 
by some straggling gentlemen, and at length by the 


Description of 

huntsman, whom I informed of what had transphed. 
He was in rapture with my hounds, and exclaimed — 
" Par Dieu, Monsieur le Colonel, ce sont des veritahles 
cMens, Us sont superbes. lis hieront non pas seulement 
tons le loups mats aussi le Diable" If I hallooed like a 
madman, he certainly was not behind me in blowing ; 
for I really thought he would have hurst either himself 
or his Jiorn. The rest of the sportsmen, being furnished 
with horns, blew in confidence ; and the noise they made 
has never since been out of my ears ! 

Another shot proclaimed that the game was again 
seen, when he turned shorter, and the hounds got nearer; 
and, on my representing to the gentlemen that our 
hounds would soon outrate him, they politely agreed to 
fire no more. The wolf was now frequently seen, and 
at every time the horns gave notice. He crossed an 
avenue tolerably clear, when Vixen, who had joined us, 
saw him; and, although just before jaded, the little 
devil got the scent and gave tongue. When she seemed 
to be near, and teazing him, my hounds came up within 
two hundred yards of his Jack, all in a sheet ; and even 
some of the French hounds, which had given up the chase, 
now came in: one of them, between a Newfoundland 
dog and a deep-mouthed Norman hound, worked very 
hard. The huntsman said — " Monsieur le Colonel, ce 
chien Norman est un gaillard, il aime les loup)s. II sera 
hientot mort." But, I replied, "I fear he will wound my 
hounds severely, there are so few : if, indeed, the pack 
were here, I should not fear him." " N'atjez pas peur, 
Mons. le Colonel," rejoined the huntsman, "je serai 
proche etje lui flan^rcrai un coup de man carabine.'' 


a Wolf Chase. 

At this moment the wolf turned to us, when the ter- 
rier, having a decided advantage from the thickness of 
the cover, continued catching at his haunches. I hal- 
looed, the huntsman blew away, and the game was now 
at the point of death, surrounded by his enemies. His 
tongue hung out, and he was evidently wounded in more 
places than one, as he could scarcely draw his near hind 
leg after him. After he had been tormented for some 
time by Vixen, he came to a sort of opening in the ride ; 
l)ut, in crossing some deep ruts, he fell in, and could not 
recover himself. The Norman hound and three others 
rushed in, and threw him on his back. He snatched, 
but they seized him by the throat and back, whilst Vixen 
had good hold of his haunch. I thrust the end of my 
whip in his mouth, and the huntsman coolly tied his nose, 
and drew his cotiteau de cJiasse, which I told him was 
unnecessary — the hounds being at him, he must soon 

Having blown our horns, and hallooed till we were 
almost dead with drought, we tied our horses to some 
trees, and sat down whilst the wolf was dying. The 
huntsman said it was a " gros loiip de quartier annee :" 
and I observed he had a famous set of grinders and good 
dog teeth. He had received, from the first fire of M. 
de Beaumont, a small pistol ball through the upper part 
of his back, and one buck shot had grazed his neck. 
My balls, being rifled very neatly, were easily known : 
two of them had entered the fleshy part of the thigh, 
and a third, which crossed the kidneys, seemed to have 
given the mortal wound — as without that, the huntsman 
said, he would have stood much longer. His l)rush had 


Dogs wounticd by the Wolf. 

suffered from some balls, which almost every gentleman 
present asserted to have been his own. 

Having opened our canteens and taken some refresh- 
ment, I ordered the carcase of the wolf to be thrown to 
the hounds ; and the greater part of it was soon de- 
voured ; but the French hounds would not touch it. 
On examining the dogs, we found that one of Consul's 
ears was almost bit off; Caustic was sadly cut on the 
side of her face ; and the rest a little injured. Vixen 
had escaped with only a bloody nose : that was, indeed, 
a severe wound for a terrier ; but she did not seem to 
mind it ; and indeed they all suffered much less than I 

Thus terminated, about ten o'clock, what I had been 
so anxious to see — a wolf hunt ; and I had now ascer- 
tained what might be done by fox hounds." 

However highly our Continental neighbours may esti- 
mate a wolf hunt, it would seem, in the estimation of an 
English sportsman, very inferior indeed to a run with a 
fox. Colonel Thornton observes, that they never think 
of running down a wolf, nor indeed does the English 
sportsman of the present day ever wish to run down a 
fox ; but, on the contrary, to run well tip to him. Fox 
hunting woidd lose its essence and spirit were the fox to 
be merely run down ; but from the language used by 
Colonel Thornton respecting the wolf, running him down 
would seem to be regarded as next to an impossibility ; 
and it would appear from his superior speed, that run- 
ning up to him would be no easy matter, even with the 
fleetest hounds in the world. 


Boar Hunting. — Manner of Training or Entering 
Young Hounds in France. 

On the chase of the wild boar, the same writer which 
I quoted in the last chapter, makes the following obser- 
vations : — 

"The equipage destined for the chase of the wild 
boar is denominated vautrait. In great hunting estab- 
lishments it forms a separate department, in which par- 
ticular officers and attendants are employed. Large 
equipages for this sport are usually attended by a pack 
of fifteen or twenty couple of hounds. The huntsmen 
and whippers-in ought to be extremely expert. This 
chase is very fatiguing : the huntsmen are obliged to 
shout incessantly, to make the dogs follow, as they are 
frequently discouraged, especially if they are pursuing an 
old boar. It requires mettlesome and vigorous horses ; 
and the riders must not be afraid of the branches in the 
thick recesses of the forest, into which they are obliged 
to penetrate. 

It is extremely difficult to procure hounds well trained 
for hunting the boar, and this instruction requires great 
patience and attention ; not that a young hound will not 
at first pursue the animal, but his scent sometimes dis- 
gusts, and the country, covered with thickets and moras- 
ses, discourages him. A boar is not so easily hunted 
down as a stag; and, let the establishment be ever so 



excellent, the chase seldom lasts less than four or five 
hours. SometuTies the animal is checked by firing a 
gun— or he is pursued by mastiffs and greyhounds. 
Chases have been known to continue two whole days, 
and at last tlie hunters could not have taken the boar 
but by shooting him, on the third day. 

When the boar finds himself driven to the last ex- 
tremity, he does not run forward, but frequently turns, 
keeping for a considerable time near the same spot, and 
seeking to make the dogs start some other game. When 
he is done up, he foams much, advances only by leaps 
and bounds, throws himself into some marsh, or sets his 
back against a thicket, facing the dogs, and defending 
himself with incredible fury. It is then that the whip- 
pers-in must give effectual support to their dogs, and 
endeavour to dislodge the animal ; but, if he keeps at 
bay, it is proper to prevent the dogs from approaching 
too near. The whippers-in enter the thicket with pre- 
caution—one of them alights, approaches the boar, and 
plunges his hunting knife into the small of his back. 
The man who inflicts the wound must be very alert, and 
instantly run ofl^ a contrary way ; for the boar always 
turns towards the side on which he feels himself wounded. 
If, however, he should prove so furious as to endanger 
the sportsmen and the dogs, the best way is to kill him 
with a gun or pistol : this is a privilege or honour re- 
served for the leader of the company, and is resorted to 
only at the last extremity. The whippers-in then sound 
the death of the animal, and encourage the dogs to 
trample on him. Having cut off the testicles, which 
would cause the flesh to contract a very disagreeable 


Of Shooting Boars. 

smell, and the fore foot, which is given to the huntsman, 
who presents it to the leader of the company, the ])oar 
is carried off. Before they return, the dogs are in- 
spected, and those that have received wounds are 
dressed, as the huntsman ought to he provided with 
needles, thread, and every thing necessary for that piu'- 

Dogs do not eat the flesh of the boar with as much 
avidity as that of the stag ; nor must it ever be presented 
to them raw. All that is in general given them is the 
shoulders and the intestines cut in pieces, and boiled in 

In some parts, small bells are fostened to the necks of 
hounds that hunt the boar and the wolf. If it is not in- 
tended to hunt down the boar, but only to shoot him, 
an equipage becomes perfectly useless ; one or two blood 
hounds, and a few good hounds are, in this case, quite 
sufficient. Nay, you need then only employ the mastiffs 
with which the gamekeepers traverse the forests where 
the boars couch, and drive them towards the spot where 
the hunters are posted. 

In Germany, and occasionally in France, very fine 
sport is obtained by limiting of boars, and likewise of 
stags, with toils. An enclosure is formed with toils and 
pitchforks, round the thickets into which the boars have 
been driven. A huntsman sets his blood hound upon 
the scent, and follows him till he has reared the game. 
Five or six hounds are then slipped: this number is suf- 
ficient to hunt a large boar ; but if there are several, the 
whole pack is taken.- 


Huntsmen must assist the Dogs in killing the Boar. 

In the first case, it is proper to accompany the hounds 
with a few clogs, produced hy crossing the breed of the 
mastiff with the hound : these animals, which are ex- 
tremely ardent, will closely press the boar and drive him 
round the enclosure. The dogs are powerfully sup- 
ported with the voice and the horn, and are followed 
close to prevent the boar from making head against them. 
After the chase has continuedsome time, the large mas- 
tiffs and greyhounds are then slipped, and these rush 
upon the boar with fury. The huntsmen advance ; one 
pierces the animal with his hunting knife in the small of 
the back ; the others, armed with sticks, are ready to 
receive him, in case he should make towards the person 
who wounded him, and strike him upon the snout, 
keeping him off with the end of the stick, till they have 
despatched him. When the proposed number of boars 
are taken, the dogs are called off." 

It would, at first view of the case, appear hardly cre- 
dible, that a boar should stand so long before hounds ; 
but this animal, in a state of unlimited freedom, is, beyond 
all question, a very different creature from the heavy, 
sluggish, domesticated boar, which frequently appears 
scarce able to support his own unwieldy bulk. From a 
private letter of the late Colonel Thornton, to a friend, I 
copy the following observations respecting the wild boar, 
and also of the pursuit of it:— " I sent you a paper M^iich 
contained something about a noble wild boar, which I 
ordered to be hunted ; and, when killed, in Chambord, 
to send it here at my expence ; and thus to try to let 
such sportsmen here (London) as never saw one, be able 
to judge for themselves. Accordingly, it being arrived, 


Chase of the Boar. 

every person that heard of it came to see it. It was 
hung up at a venison dealer's in Old Bond Street. The 
concourse of people was so great, that the man could not 
get out of, or others enter, his shop. It is to day (January 
15, 1819) being cut up into forty pieces, to be disposed 
of to various friends; and I have given the skin, head, 
ike. all unmutilated, to Bullock ; to shew them, with the 
account of the different balls he received ere he would 
resign to hounds or men. He is by no means the largest 
boar I have killed ; but he is a terrible looking fellow, 
more danoerous than one much older, for then their 
tushes grow thicker, become curved, and the animal is 
more inactive. He wounded many of the hounds, but 
only killed, I believe, three. A couple of vermin terriers 
plagued him the most, as he could not get his tushes to 
bear on them. The last final shaft was a lingo, which, 
I see, broke three of his ribs and passed through him. 
The number of balls he received I shall examine and 
relate. I understand, he stood a run of full forty miles. 
But I am sure I ran one at least one hundred and forty, 
and then he was not done up, though constantly view^ed 
from half past eleven till past ten the next day, relays 
of hounds being uncoupled close at him at every three 
or four hours. What other animal can shew such game 
and bottom ? 

We dine to-day a party on his loin or saddle, which 
was where he received his death wound. The wound, 
as I have already observed, was inflicted by a lingo, 
which is a piece of iron or lead, formed something like 
a weaver's shuttle, of the weight of two or three balls, 
and made to fit the calibre of the gun. It is a sort of 


French Method of 

bolt, which, if it strike into flesh, it goes deeper : if it 
touches a bone, it then turns itself broadways ; and thus, 
though a ball would only have broke one rib, it broke 
three, close up to the back. The number of balls that 
he received shall be the subject of my next letter." — 
This boar, it seems, was three years old, was run by 
fleet fox hounds, and during the progress of the chase, 
crossed four rivers. 

The following is the plan adopted by the French of 
training or entering young hounds, from Colonel Thorn- 
ton : — 

''In the country, puppies, after their separation from 
the mother, which generally takes place when they are 
two months old, are fed with bread, milk, and soup ; 
they are never suffered to eat carrion, nor to run about 
among the warrens; they are not shut up, but being- 
kept in the covu't yard, they become familiar with the 
other domestic animals, which they are afterwards not 
tempted to pursue, and are habituated to the inclemency 
of the air by their frequent courses in the fields. At 
the age of ten months, or a year at farthest, they are 
taken to the kennel for the pvu-pose of training : it is 
here thought to be of advantage to keep them together 
in the same kennel. The whipper-in, to whom their 
education is committed, takes care not to suffer them to 
stir a step, or take their meals, without orders. He 
therefore begins by habituating them to the different 
tones and expressions used in the chase, to make them 
obedient to these. For this purpose he puts a trough 
with bread, about ten yards from the door of the kennel, 
which he half opens, and putting in, through the open- 


Training Hounds. 

ing, a switch, which he holds in his hand, he moves it 
in such a manner, that those dogs which attempt to force 
their way through, receive a smart stroke on the nose. 
In a short time, with the aid of gentleness and patience, 
and of the switch, which he still keeps moving, he is 
enabled to open the door quite w ide, and placing him- 
self in the middle, he prevents the dogs from going out. 
When he has brought them so far, that not one of them 
stirs when he half opens the door and cries back/ he 
then turns round and permits them to go out to eat, 
saying, come along, come along / This lesson being 
repeated morning and evening, for several days, the 
young pack become perfectly acquainted with the first 
expressions ; on which, the next step is to make them 
lie still on the benches in the kennel, crying back, while 
he brings the tray into the place. When he sees that 
they are perfect in this new lesson, he increases the diffi- 
culty, by repeating the terms, tallij-ho, back, and come 
along, before they eat. By degrees, he deters them 
from stirring from the benches by the mere motion of 
his hand, his handkerchief, or a whip, though he feigns 
to turn round, and even when turning half round, he 
employs one of these means of obedience contrary to 
that motion. 

When the dogs are found to be less wild, and know 
the persons who have the care of them, they may then 
be coupled, and taken out morning and evening, or three 
times a day, if despatch be necessary, to a place where 
there is no danger of losing them — such as a field in- 
closed with hedges. They are accompanied by four 
men — one before, one behind, and two others on each 


French Method of 

side. The first clay they are taken straight forward ; 
and the man who is at their head frequently calls them 
to him with lio, ho^ ho ! The second day the lesson is 
varied, turning off sometimes to the right and to the left ; 
still, however, using the same terms. The third day 
they describe a semicircle, sometimes on one side, some- 
times on the other, accompanying the above-mentioned 
terms with the exclamations, ha au retoiir, ha au retour. 
They are next made to describe a complete circle ; after 
which, they are stopped now and then with the cry of 
hack, and not suffered to proceed till they are called with 
come along. 

When the dogs are perfect in these lessons, they are 
made to turn about in this manner: — They are first 
stopped ; on which, the man behind places himself before 
him who is at the head : those at the two sides never 
quit their places. The man at the head then walks 
through the dogs, saying, ha au retour, and snapping 
his fingers : the other strikes the ground with a switch 
or whip, to prevent them from proceeding, and points to 
the other man who calls them, at the same time saying, 
ttirn about. By this method they are soon accustomed 
to comprehend the term which is of such essential im- 
portance in the chase. To these lessons the hounds are 
confined till they are perfect masters of them, and per- 
form them with facility and intelligence They are then 
taught to practise the return to their place. For this 
manoeuvre, the person at the head stops the hounds, 
checking them with the term toide bellement, (softly) pro- 
nounced in a milder tone than back, which being intended 
to enforce speedy obedience, ought to be articulated 


Training Hounds. 

sharply. When they have stopped, he who is behind, 
and at first very near to the dogs, calls them with Ao, 
ho^ ho J As soon as they begin to turn their heads, he 
instantly cries an retour^ au retour, (turn, turn,) and 
immediately begins to walk fonvard again, after having 
turned half round : this lesson is repeated till the dogs 
make no fault. The term ho, ho, is then omitted, and 
the hounds are taught to turn, the man keeping at a 
greater distance, but yet so as to be heard by them. 
When the dogs perfectly comprehend all the above in- 
structions, they are made to repeat, in one lesson, all 
the manoeuvres they have learned in several. After this, 
they are taught to stop, though the man at their head 
continues to walk on : in this lesson he stops the dogs, 
crying back, and facing them ; he then retires backward, 
keeping them on the spot by the word bad'. If a dog 
advances, he calls him by his name, and cries back ; one 
of the men on the flanks, in like manner, repeats his 
name, and if he does not obey, he applies the whip, 
crying back, and adding ventre a la meute (get back to 
the pack.) When they are all attentive, the leader turns 
round and calls them, saying, come along, come along — 
ho, ho, ho ! When they have reached him, he immedi- 
ately faces them, cries back, and snaps his fingers to 
animate them. He then turns again, calling them with 
come along, Jind softly. After they have practised this 
lesson several days, and learned to execute it properly, 
it is thus varied : — The man at the head, still walking 
forward, and without turning, checks the hounds with 
softly, softly, and back, and continues his way. The 
two men on the flanks are obliged to pay great attention 


French MothoU of 

at this moment, to keep the dogs in exact order, caUing 
them by name, and chastising such as are in fault. 
When they are all quiet, the man at the head calls them 
to him, and faces them when they have reached him. 

A docility still more complete is obtained, if the man 
at the head walks forward without giving any orders, 
and the man in the rear checks and stops the dogs with 
the words softly, and hack ; though the first continues 
advancing, and must not halt, except at the command of 
the second, for the purpose of turning half round, calling 
the hounds to him, and facing. 

The hounds being stopped in this manner by the 
whipper-in in the rear, and setting oiF again at the com- 
mand of him at the head, to join him, the former checks 
them a second time by the same terms, and stops them 
in full career, notwithstanding the continued progression 
of the latter. 

All this being perfectly well comprehended and exe- 
cuted, the pack is exercised in returns, commanded alter- 
nately by the men at the head and in the rear. For this 
purpose, the latter suffers the hounds and the other 
three conductors to proceed forward, to the distance of 
fifty or sixty yards, and then calls to them to return. 
The first who, at the moment of recal, turns about and 
stands still, while the pack executes the movement 
directed, waits till they are within ten yards of him who 
commanded it, and then cries bacl\ As soon as they 
have stopped, he calls to them to return ; and when they 
are within ten yards of him, the other renews the same 
command. While this manoeuvre is repeated several 
times alternately, by those in the front and rear, the men 
on the flanks are stationary. 


Training Hounds. 

When they are masters of these alternate returns, 
their execution is rendered moi-e difficult, by obliging 
them to halt as instantaneously as if they had been or- 
dered by the voice, by the mere motion of the arm, or 
the handkerchief of one of the men on the flanks, or of 
the leader, when they are at a considerable distance from 
him. These movements, it is true, are not new to them, 
since they are taught them in the first lessons they 
receive in the kennel ; and they are required to obey 
them as promptly as verbal commands. 

The dogs having become familiar with their guides, 
and perfectly comprehending their gestures and orders, 
they are then accustomed to go out without being- 
coupled, taking care to unloose first those that are the 
most tractable and docile. They are at first walked in 
places where they cannot be lost, nor diverted by any 
object from the attention that is required of them ; they 
are then taken to all kinds of situations, to accustom 
them to execute their different lessons, and to be kept in 
the same state of docility amidst the variety of objects 
that will present themselves. This ensures their perfect 
obedience, which is one of the principal delights of the 
chase ; and can never be obtained in enclosed places, 
which are justly considered pernicious, even to old packs. 

When the hounds are supposed to be sufficiently in- 
structed in all the intonations of the voice, they are then 
exercised with the sound of the horn, preserving the 
same gradation in these new lessons. They are first 
stopped with the voice ; the man at their head removes 
to some distance, and calls them to him by a recheat ; 
they are in like manner commanded to return ; and when 


French Method of 

they have learned this perfectly, they are stopped from 
time to time, by the cry of back, tally-ho, as in the 
chase: a flourish is then sounded, and they are made to 
set off again with come along, softly, or a recheat. 

The dogs being as perfect in all these lessons as is re- 
quired, they are uncoupled, and exercised on horseback, 
at a foot pace and short trot, with the same number of 
men, and in the same situations, in all they have been 
daily taught on foot. Above all things, care is taken 
not to give them ardour, to check them at every object 
capable of taking off their attention, and even to ahght, 
to correct, immediately, such as begin to chatter. 

When the dogs are complete masters of all that has 
before been taught them, both on horseback and on foot, 
a still more difficult task succeeds — that is, to walk them 
out in the plains, in the midst of hares, without mani- 
festing any ardour. For this purpose, they are coupled 
in troops of six or eight at most, and led by valets on 
foot, who take them to the plain best stocked with hares, 
through which the men proceed, at the distance of one 
hundred yards from each other. The young hounds 
are all eager to pursue the first hare that is started ; each 
valet takes notice of those dogs who prick their ears 
most, falls upon them with his whip, crying, ha hey, les 
vilains, ha hey, derriere, and continues his way. At 
each new fault he repeats the same correction, till the 
dogs draw back, instead of advancing, when they per- 
ceive a hare. This lesson being repeated two days suc- 
cessively, the dogs are then taken out, simply coupled. 
The person who is at their head keeps attentively on the 
look out for all the hares that may be started : as soon 


Training Hounds. 

as he perceives one, lie checks the clogs, crying, toute 
hellement , fi-de-ca , derriere, ha hey. He removes from 
before them, that they may have a view of the whole 
plain ; and if any of them but raises an ear, he is not 
spared. By this method the dogs are habituated, even 
uncoupled, to pass through the plains in the midst of 
hares, without taking any notice of them. 

These excursions having succeeded as well as could 
be wished, they are repeated with men on horseback: 
if the hounds should so far forget themselves as to run 
away and return to the kennel, they are immediately led 
back to the plain, and walked along coupled, by men on 
foot, who correct them severely when they shew the 
least signs of ardour ; and especially those which, by 
their example, hurry along the others in their indocility. 

The young pack being sufficiently advanced, they are 
taken out in troops to hunt, that they may become ac- 
quainted with the country, and be habituated to re- 
turn to their kennel. The valets who take them out 
are particularly attentive to keep them behind them 
during the whole chase, to silence them whenever they 
begin to open, and to maintain the most rigid obedience ; 
they can come up time enough to be in at the death — 
this will make them acquainted with the animal which 
they are destined to hunt. 

After two or three chases of this kind, the young- 
hounds are divided into two equal companies, which are 
subdivided into two and two among the lower troops, 
(hardes basses) to be uncoupled with them. Each of 
these companies is hunted only twice, to prevent their 
getting so much exercise as to beat the old hounds. In 


French Method of Training Hounds. 

proportion as they become more steady, the hounds are 
removed from troop to troop, (cVharde en harde) to the 
old pack ; at the same time, attention is paid that half 
of the latter always consists of old dogs. The troops 
remain in this state at least three months ; and the young 
hounds are not removed into the pack till they have no 
longer any occasion for persons to conduct them. 

When the new hounds are not numerous, they may be 
trained in this manner without deranging the old pack : 
when it is numerous, and the sportsman is desirous of 
keeping up an excellent equipage, a small number of the 
fleetest and staunchest hounds are selected to train the 
young dogs ; and, when these are sufficiently docile and 
steady, they are joined to the pack — so that no derange- 
ment or suspension of pleasure takes place. 

Spring-hunting is considered the best for completing 
the training of young hounds. To render them indif- 
ferent to every other species of game but that which 
they are destined to hunt, they are taken out coupled, 
and in troops, (several couple of hounds tied together is 
called a troop) to places where there is abundance of 
game. They are suffered to see those kinds which they 
are not intended to hunt, and if any of them appear 
eager, and begin to chatter, they are corrected by the 
person that accompanies them, who leads them, repeat- 
ing — toute hellement,Ji ha hey, derriere, and continues his 
way. This lesson is practised every day, till the hounds 
are so steady as not to follow the scent of any animal 
but that which they are to hunt : they soon look upon 
all others with indifference." 


The Methods of 'pursuing the Chase in England and 
in France compared. — Anecdotes of an extraordinary 
Pedestrian Fox Hunter. — Observations on the Mis- 
chievous Propensities of the Fox ; and upon the 
Injury sustained by his Dejrredations. 

If we compare the manner in which the Chase is con- 
ducted on the Continent, particularly in France, with 
the mode of pursuit adopted in England ; or, at least, if 
we look at the matter with English feeling, we shall be 
apt to despise the former, although attended with much 
pomp and parade. At the same time, it is but fair to 
observe, that a Frenchman, accustomed from infancy to 
be fond of shew, would naturally enough prefer his boar, 
his wolf, or his stag hunt, to our enthusiastic and mad- 
dening pvu'suit of the fox : the latter, I am inclined to 
think, would not be well suited to the nerves of a French- 
man, who, unaccustomed to such horses as the English 
hunter, as also to our method of crossing a country, 
would regard a five-barred gate, or indeed any rasper, 
as an insurmountable obstacle. Beckford, in one of his 
amusing and instructive letters, observes, that a French- 
man was on a visit to the late Lord C , "who 

Ijeing a great sportsman, thought that he could not oblige 
his friend more than by offering him to partake of an 
amusement, which he himself was so fond of :— he there- 
fore mounted him on one of his best horses, and shewed 


Frenchmen not partial to Fox Hunting. 

him a fox chase. The Frenchman, after having been 
well shaken, dirted, tired, run away with, and thrown 
down, was asked, on his return, * Comment il avoit 
trouve la chasse ? ' — ' Morbleu, Milord (said he, shrug- 
ging up his shoulders) votre chasse est une chasse dia- 
bolique!'" — In another place, Beckford remarks, "I 
hunted two winters at Turin ; but their hunting is no 
more like ours, than is the hot meal you there stand up 
to eat, to the English breakfast you sit down to here. 
Were I to describe their manner of hunting, their in- 
finity of dogs, their number of huntsmen, their relays 
of horses, their great saddles, great bits, and jack boots, 
it would be no more to our present purpose than the 
description of a wild boar chase in Germany, or the 
hunting of jackals in Bengal. C'est une chasse magni- 
Jique, et voila tout. — However, to give you an idea of 
their huntsmen, I must tell you that one day the stag 
(which is very unusual) broke cover, and left the forest ; 
a circumstance which gave as much pleasure to me as 
displeasure to the rest — it put every thing into confusion. 
I followed one of the huntsmen, thinking he knew the 
country best ; but it was not long before we were sepa- 
rated : the first ditch we came to stopped him. I, eager 
to go on, hallooed out to him, * Allons, jjiquettr, sautez 
done.'' — * Non, pardi, (replied he, very coolly) cest un 
double fosse — -je ne saute i^as des double fosses.' '* 

From the nature of the country, having few, if any, 
fences, what a Frenchman would regard as excellent 
runs may, no doubt, be obtained ; indeed, Colonel 
Thornton remarks, in one part of his Sporting Tour, 
that the finest bursts he ever enjoyed took place in 


Comparison of French and English Hunting. 

France ; however, although the Colonel speaks of them 
— not exactly in raptui'es perhaps — -but in terms of un- 
qualified approbation, yet they are not exactly the sort 
of bursts to suit the taste of the generality of English 
sportsmen : — a burst of three or ten miles over a cham- 
paign country, without the interruption, perhaps, of a 
single leap, is not the kind of sport from which a true 
English fox hunter derives his greatest pleasure — he is 
pleased with the intervention of a few raspers and other 
difficulties; to surmount which renders the run much 
more interesting, and maybe said to constitute his greatest 
delight. Different countries have different customs, and 
different tastes ; and I can very easily conceive, that a 
good run in England with a fox would be as unpleasant, 
u'ksome, and even alarming to a Frenchman, as the 
hunting in France would be insipid and tedious to an 
English sportsman. The number of Englishmen, how- 
ever, who have visited France, and many of whom have 
taken up a temporary residence in that country, has, in 
all probability, somewhat improved the French system 
of sporting. This seems tolerably evident from the 
number of English hounds and English horses which 
the nobility and gentry of France have procured within 
the few last years. 

That the French have much improved in what relates 
to the chase, is evident from a number of circumstances 
which will impress the mind on a slight retrospective 
glance — some of the grosser absurdities have been alto- 
gether abandoned : — some years back, for instance, the 
hounds of the king of France were fed with wheaten 
bread of the finest and best quality! — Tlie kennel win- 



Hunting, an universal passion. 

dows, however, in France, are entitled to notice. Instead 
of glass, thin canvas is vised, which, it seems, will admit 
a free circulation of air, and, at the same time, effectually 
keep out the flies, which, in summer, are great torments 
to dogs. 

Hunting may be regarded as an universal passion ; 
but pursued with more ardour in England than in any 
other country ; and it must be admitted that English 
sportsmen stand unrivalled either as to their know- 
ledge of the chase, or the manner in which they pursue 
it. Nor is hunting in this country confined exactly to 
the higher orders, or such as can afford to keep horses 
for the purpose ; as the hounds are miiformly attended 
by pedestrian sportsmen. It is true, the pursuit of the 
fox is not well calculated to afford diversion to the latter 
class ; yet extraordinary instances of this kind occasion- 
ally present themselvesj and cannot fail to excite atten- 
tion. In the present year (1826) I repeatedly met the 
fox hounds of Hugo Meynell, Esq. of Hoarecross Hall, 
Staffordshire ; and I uniformly found them attended by 
a pedestrian sportsman, of rather singular, but charac- 
teristic, appearance : he was a yovmg man, about five 
feet eight inches high, with a countenance not remark- 
able for animation ; yet there was something about him 
more than usually interesting. He appeared in a scarlet 
jacket, buttoned close, and in other respects equipped 
for running. The first time I had occasion particularly 
to notice this young man, was one morning, when Mr. 
Meynell's hounds found in a cover called Ravensdale, 
eight miles from the town of Derby. It had been a 
sharp frost during the night ; and when the fox went 


An extraordinary I'edestriau Sportsman. 

away, the ground was hard, and in many places, very 
slippery : in consequence, I got a fall at the commence- 
ment of the run ; and before I was again mounted, such 
was the speed of the hounds, that I was distanced, if not 
thrown out. However, I followed as fast as possible by 
the marks of the horses' feet which had gone before me ; 
#ind after riding a mile or two, I came up with the red 
coated pedestrian already noticed ; but we did not long 
keep company : — I fell in with him several times ; and 
when I at length reached the hounds, owing to the fox 
having gone to ground, I perceived that the pedestrian 
sportsman had arrived before me ! 

I saw him whenever I met Mr. Meynell's hounds, and 
a little inquiry furnished me with the following particu- 
lars respecting him : — His name is Thomas White, he 
was born at Andover, and is now about two and twenty 
years of age. From infancy, he was much attached to 
the sports of the field, and followed the hounds on foot as 
soon as he was able to run. He has been known to run 
sixty miles a day in the pursuit of the chase, taking into 
calculation the distance of the fixture and the return 
home. Last winter (1825), a fine dog fox was found (by 
Mr. Meynell's hounds) at Pot Luck cover, near Willing- 
ton : renard passed through Willington ; and, making 
away in the direction of Sir Henry Every 's, passed the 
ice house — thence to Ettwall — thence to Sutton on the 
Hill and Dalbury Lees — round the covers at Radborne 
— over the meadows to the left, crossing the Uttoxeter 
turnpike road to Burneston. The fox then turned 
towards Egginton, passed Sir H. Every 's dog kennel, 
making away again for Pot Luck cover, and was killed 



All extraordinary 

at the very place where he was found, after an excellent 
run of two hours and thirty-five mmutes. During the 
run. White was frequently with the hounds, and was up 
at the death. 

On another occasion the same hounds found at Aries- 
ton covers, and went away at a rattling rate for Swinfen 
Moor — thence to Osmaston — turned to the right for 
Swarkston, where he was lost, afl^ording, however, a very 
sharp run of twenty-five minutes, over a heavy country. 
Tried the covers at Arleston again — no find. Tried a 
small ozier bed at no great distance — found. Renard 
broke cover in gallant style, passing through Mr. Glover's 
farm yard, skirting the canal, and made away for Arles- 
ton Gorse — passed through the cover for Swarkston 
cover — crossed a large drain below the gorse, and, pas- 
sing Chellaston, proceeded to within a mile of Weston; 
when renard, finding himself pressed, made a sharp turn 
for Chellaston, making away for Swarkston cover ; but, 
being headed back by some men at work in a field, he 
crossed the Derby road — thence to Elvaston, and turn- 
ing to the left, lay down in a meadow. This caused a 
check for some minutes, when renard was at length 
viewed off by the whole field : — he went in a direct line 
for th6 ozier bed where he had been found — passed 
through it — crossed Denman's Lane — reached Derby 
race course, passing close to the stand — he proceeded 
along the banks of the canal, and entered some small 
gardens between the canal and the river Derwent, where 
some boatmen hit him with a stone, by which he was 
disabled, and the hounds killed him in the gardens. 
One hour and thirty minutes. White was frequently 


Pedestrian Sportsman. 

conspicuous during the run — was up at the death, and 
was presented with a pad ! — This occurred in March, 

In the following December, Mr. Meynell's fox hounds 
found at Arleston covers ; when renard passed through 
Pot Lucks ; leaning to the right, he passed through the 
village of Willington — crossed the Derby road, Eggin- 
ton Common, through Egginton, crossed the river Dove 
close to Sir Henry's ozier beds — thence to RoUeston, 
keeping up the meadows, turned to the left towards 
Burton on Trent, through Rolleston, and got to ground 
in a rabbit warren. While digging at one hole the fox 
bolted at another, going off in the direction of Horninglow 
— back towards Rolleston, which he did not seem inclined 
to leave, and where, after some dodging, he was lost. 
This business lasted nearly seven hours, from first to 
last ; the first two hours of which was very good : it 
finished at five o'clock. White was almost constantly 
with the hounds, and witnessed the conclusion. 

Many similar occurrences might be eiunuerated, 
wherein White displayed his invincible ardour for the 
chase, and his uncommon abilities as a pedestrian : one 
of them, however, merits particular notice: — Early in 
the present year (1826) Mr. Meynell's hounds met at 
Stoves Gorse in Necdwood Forest, Staffordshire, a 
distance of nine or ten miles from White's residence ; 
but he appeared at the appointed place in due time. 
After several covers were unsuccessfully tried, a fox was 
found in a turnip field ; and the hounds, after running 
one mile and a half, came to a check : however, he was 
hit off' again from some willows, and the hounds went 

T 8 


An extraordinary Pedestrian Sportsman. 

away breast high, passing through the village of Han- 
bury, thence proceeding in the direction for Tutbury 
Castle : when near this place, renard turned to the left ; 
and, after describing a large circle, passed again through 
Hanbury, and a second time approached Tutbury 
Castle. — Some dodging took place in the covers here, 
when at length, renard again faced the open country ; 
but finding he could not hve before his pursuers, he 
went to ground in the bottom of a hedge. After digging 
thirty-five minutes, two foxes were discovered. The 
run fox was killed ; the second was turned out ; and 
was lost after a run of thirty-eight minutes. White was 
very conspicuous during both runs, and at the conclusion 
of the business, walked home, a distance of fourteen 
miles ! 

In May last, White ran from Derby to Burton, eleven 
miles, by the side of the Birmingham mail. In Febru- 
ary, IS25, he ran from Derby to Nottingham, sixteen 
miles, by the side of the mail. 

In June, 1825, he ran round the course at Buxton, 
one mile, in four minutes and fifty seconds, after having 
walked eighteen miles. 

The gentleman, to whom I am indebted for the fore- 
going particulars, remarked that " Tom White was a 
truly interesting young fellow, of most eccentric habits ; 
good hearted, thoughtless, amiable, and unfortunate." 
White occasionally attended Sir Henry Every's harriers, 
and, on such occasions, appeared in a green jacket. Fox 
Hunting, however, was his favourite sport, and he always 
honoured it in scarlet. W^hite enlisted into the tenth 
hussars either in the month of June or July, 1826. 


Unjust Accusations against the Fox. 

The MiscJiievous Propensities of the Fox. — A great 
outcry is frequently raised against the fox by surly, ill- 
tempered farmers, and silly, chattering, old women, and 
many depredations are laid to the charge of renard of 
which he is most perfectly innocent. — In order to silence 
the discontent and clamour of these growlers, it was the 
custom, in some hunts, to pay for damages which were 
laid to the fox's charge. Lord Anson (if my informa- 
tion be correct) was, a few years ago, very liberal in this 
respect, and, I make no doubt, sustained many imposi- 
tions in consequence ; and those masters of fox hounds 
who pursue the same system (if there are any) may rest 
assured that they will constantly be subjected to the 
most unjust demands. That foxes will sometimes make 
free with geese and poultry, is a matter which admits of 
no sort of doubt ; but whenever depredations of this sort 
are committed, it is entirely owing to the insecure situa- 
tions in which the birds are suffered to remain during 
the night ; since, if they are properly attended to, they 
will be placed beyond the reach of the fox. At the 
same time, it may very justly be remarked, that a fox 
will not approach a human habitation for the purpose of 
plunder, unless constrained by hunger : as, although he 
is by no means deficient in courage, will fight to the last 
gasp, and die without complaining — yet there is scarcely 
a shyer animal in nature. The fox will feed upon great 
variety — he will eat worms, when greater dainties are 
not to be had ; he will eagerly seek and devour field 
mice and rats, nor can any terrier in existence be a more 
expert rat catcher than a fox. He is fond of fish, which 
he contrives to catch, particularly eels ; and what is 


Trifling Injury sustained by 

much worse, he will destroy partridges and pheasants ; 
he will take these birds not only upon the nest, but will 
hunt for them, draw and set, something after the manner 
of a pointer ; with this difference, however, that he sets 
only a sufficient length of time to ascertain as nearly as 
possible (by means of his olfactory organs) the situation 
of his intended victim, in order to spring upon and secure 
it. He sacrifices leverets too when they fall in his way ; 
but it very rarely happens that he meddles with lambs. 
The rabbit is his obvious and perhaps most favourite 
food; since, where rabbits are in tolerable plenty, the fox 
rarely gives himself any further trouble : on this account, 
therefore, it should always be contrived, if possible, to 
have every hunt sufficiently stocked with rabbits. 

From very considerable inquiry, I can very safely 
assert, that the injury sustained by farmers in the fox- 
hunting districts, from the depredations of foxes, does 
not amount to one pound sterling, annually, each — most 
likely not to five shillings. But it must be remarked 
that complaints arise only from those who are not fond 
of the chase, as a fox-hunting farmer will never suffer a 
fox to be killed unfairly. Not many months ago, I hap- 
pened to be walking with Mr. White of the Crown Inn, 
Nantwich, over a farm in his occupation, not far from 
the town last mentioned. He remarked that a very fine 
fox had generally kennelled in some part of it for two 
years. Upon one occasion renard made free with an old 
favourite goose, when Mr. White's husbandman ear- 
nestly inquired if he might not be allowed to destroy 
him? — Not for all the geese in Christendom was the 
reply. This was as it should be. 


the Farmer from Foxes. 

Foxes are more mischievous perhaps in the mountain- 
ous districts than in any other parts : — in the north of 
England, for instance, and the mountainous parts of 
Scotland, where they are probably in some degree cir- 
cumscribed in their food, and where their destruction by 
the shepherds is of little consequence to the chase, since 
it is not possible to follow foxes with hounds in such 
places. It is true, some years ago, Mr. Forbes kept a 
pack of fox hounds in the Highlands of Scotland, in the 
neighbourhood of Inverness, and there may be fox 
hounds still kept in some parts of that rugged country, 
for aught I know to the contrary ; but, of all places, the 
Highlands of Scotland appear to me the least hkely to 
afford diversion. On the 13th of August, 1824, I hap- 
pened to be shooting in the Highlands of Caithness, in 
company with Mr. John Gun, whose father, John Sin- 
clair Gun, Esq. occupies a very considerable extent of 
these Highlands, upon wliich he feeds many himdreds 
of cattle and sheep — his farm yard is also well stocked 
with poultry. Finding that foxes frequently appeared 
amongst the hills, I inquired as to the damage which was 
sustained from their depredations — it was very trifling 
indeed. It must be recollected that in these parts there 
are plenty of grouse, as well as ptarmigan and the 
Alpine hare, upon the tops of the grey hills, wliich, with 
a number of other birds and small animals, no doubt, 
form the food of the foxes. 

The same remarks will, in a great degree, apply to 
the mountains of the north of England, in some parts of 
which foxes are very numerous : it is true, neither the 
ptarmigan nor the Alpine hare is foimd upon them; but 


Of the Foxes found 

there are a number of small animals, grouse, and various 
other birds, in the immediate neighbourhood of these 
rocky fastnesses, which, no doubt, constitute the princi- 
pal sources of supply. From inquiries which I have 
repeatedly made, during various grouse shooting excur- 
sions, I feel no hesitation in asserting that the instances 
are very rare indeed where lambs fall sacrifices to ren- 
ard's voracity — it is only, in fact, when a lamb is first 
dropped, that a fox will, even under the pressing calls 
of hunger, attack it. With the geese, (and many are 
frequently seen in the vallies immediately beneath the 
hills) the foxes are much more apt to make free ; but as 
they prowl for prey only during the night, it is entirely 
the fault of the owners if their flocks suffer. However, 
in these parts, a price is set upon renard's head, and 
foxes are unsparingly destroyed as often as opportuni- 
ties are presented. Their extirpation, however, would 
appear almost impossible, or at least a work of much 
more than ordinary difficulty, from the nature of the 
holds in which they hide themselves, and in which they 
bring forth their young. In Westmoreland, not far 
from Kirkby Stephen, on the rocky summit of an im- 
mense hill, situated close to the main road, foxes have 
fovmd a secure asylum for ages. By means of narrow 
ledges of stone, which will afford no footing for a human 
being, these animals contrive to enter holes or dens in 
the very face of an abrupt rock, whence it is not possible 
to dislodge them, vinless some extraordinary means were 
employed for the purpose. The shepherds sometimes 
surprise a fox at a distance from his retreat, and he falls 
a victim to his own carelessness, or his own confidence. 


in the Mountains. 

In some parts of these mountainous regions, foxes are 
very plentiful. In the latter end of the year 1823, or 
the early part of 1824, the hounds of R. Bradshaw, 
Esq. of Halton, near Lancaster, ran a fox from the 
neighboui'hood of the last mentioned place for many 
miles in the direction of Kendall. It so happened at 
the commencement of the run, that the fox passed 
within a few yards of me, and I scarcely ever recollect 
observing so fine an animal of the kind. The hounds 
went away close at his brush, and followed him with 
great speed ; but he ultimately reached the inaccessible 
fortress of Farlton Knots, almost in sight of the hounds, 
after a run of more than twenty miles. Farlton Knots 
is the rocky crest of one of the large mountains, which 
form a range between Burton and Kendall, as it were, 
in Westmoreland, and affords the most perfect security 
for foxes. The music of the pack had attracted the 
attention of several shepherds, who approached, and 
one of them informed me that no less than four foxes 
had stolen away when they heard the hounds. I ex- 
pressed a degree of doubtful surprise at what he had 
stated ; when, by way, I suppose, of completely removing 
my scepticism, he further remarked, that he had no 
doubt there were twenty more still remaining in various 
fastnesses of the rock ! Half the number, it must be 
allowed, would constitute sufficient plenty. 



Adder, for the bite of the . . . . .86 

Ancient objects of pursuit, the stag, the wolf, and the boar, were the 12 
Anecdote of Will. Dean 

-s of the famous Dick Knight 

— s of an extraordinary pedestrian fox hunter 

Babblers should not be kept 
Bag foxes, of 

Barometer, vaiiations of the 
Beagle, the . . . 

'■ ■! the lap-dog . . 

— — — the genuine . 
Bite of a dog, remedy for the 

of the adder, remedy for 


Blood, to stop an effusion of . 

— — — difference of opinion respecting 

■ the subject of, considered 

Blood hound, old English 

Bluecap, an extraordinary fox hound 

Boar, hunting the wild 

Breeding in an in 

Burns, remedy for 

Canker in the lips 

Casting round sheep . 

Chase, methods of pursuing the, in France an 

Check, coming to a . 

Circumstance, extraordinary, of a young fox hou 

Cold hunting, of . . , 

Cold ..... 

Convulsions . . 

Cough ..... 

Country, change of, injurious to hounds 

Cubs, breeding of . . , 

of diseased, or mangy 


Darlington, Lord, as a huntsman 

Dean, Will, anecdote of 

Discipline, kennel . . 

Diseases of hounds and methods of cure 

Distemper, the .... 

appearances of, on dissection 

the cow pock will not prevent the 

Dog's age . . . , 

England compared 
nd bitch 









































Draper, Squire, a celebrated fox-hunter, and his daughter Di 
Dumb madness ••.... 


20, 21 


Edward I. the first Engh'sh fox hunter , 

English hounds superior to those of France 


Feeding, of 
Feeder, of the . 
Feet, sore 

Films in the eye . . 

Fleas, to destroy . . 

Foil, hunting the . . 

Formica . . . 

Foxes, likely places to try for them 

running the roads 

bag, of • • . 

purchasing, condemned 

of digging 

Fox hound, the 

speed of the . . 

of the olfactory organs of the 

Fox hounds, of . . 

Sir Tatton Sykes's 

impropriety of entering young, at hare 

the Badsworth 

the Duke of Rutland's 

———^ the Cheshire (Sir H. Mainwaring's) 

extraordinary speed of 

obedience indispensable in 

— — the manner in which they should draw 

of casting . . ; 

coming to a fault 

being left to themselves . 

Fox hunting, old method of . . 

• superior to all other diversions 

Fox, recovering a hunted, wlien scent fails 

tired . . . . 

running the foil , ; . 

trying back for a 

- metiiod of drawing a 

Gaoler, the fox hound 
Glider, the fox hound 



Hair, to bring, upon a scalded part 
Halloos, of ... . 

Hare hunting 

the hounds best calculated for 

Hare, the doubles, &c. of the 

every, has her particular play 

the, should be fairly hunted 

. 119 














. 191 






. ibid 






. 196 

17, 184 

. 206 


162, 193 





193, 195 
207, 209 



Hare finders 

. ■ of the pursuit of the . . 

Hares, of chopping 

Harriers should be well matched in speed 

— — — should be kept to their own game 

of casting . . , 

various kinds of 

Heel, of running back the 
Hound, form of the 
Hounds, of various 

- diseases of, and methods of cure 
- quarrelsome . . . 

. - breeding of . . . 

-I young, treatment of 

■ young, should be fed twice a day 

— — — of chastising 

casting themselves 

^. individual character of the . 

French method of training 

Hunting, the progress of 

- improved in this country by the Saxons and Normans 

of our ancestors • . . . . 

terms of Norman origin ... 

summer i . .... 

spring, censured 

Huntsman, the duty of a 

what constitutes a perfect 

should draw up wind . , 

Huntsmen, modern, notices of several 

slow, improper for fox hounds 













. 54 









9, 16 


11, 1'2 




21, 147 






Impressions, importance of first 



Kennel, of the - - _ 

two recommended 

. interior of the 

— — appendages to the 

■ stoves of essential service in the 

'—— the Quorndon 

' the Duke of Rutland's 

> ' discipline 

Kibble, the ... 

Knight, Dick, anecdotes of 





Lameness in the shoulder 

Lice, to destroy 

Lounger, a celebrated fox hound 

Madcap, a famous fox hound 
Madness, dumb 




54, 45 

INDEX. 311 


Mange, the common _ - - - - 83 

the red - - .... 84 

Meeting, the ancient and modern hour of - - - 23 

an early hoar of, favourable to sport - - - 174 

Megrim ..._--- 72 
Merkin, an extraordinary fox hound bitch - - • 53 
Moody, the famous whipper-in - - - • 192 
Meynell, Hugo, Esq. of Quorndon, a celebrated fox hunter - 22 
his opinions respecting fox hunting - 1 75 


Names of hounds -- - - - - 113 

Oatmeal, preferable to barley flour for hounds - - - 119 

bread dust, a substitute for . _ _ 120 

Observations on the mischievous propensities of the fox - - 305 

Opinion cf an old sportsman _ _ . . 209 

Otter hunting -._---. 257 


Fack, number of the - - - - 215 

Pedestrians, hare hunting favourable to - - - - 229 

Poison, remedy for hounds that have taken - - .. 80 

■ antidote for vegetable - - -^ - - 81 

Physicing hounds - - - - - 125 


Riding to hounds - - -- - -188 

Scalds, remedy for ----- - 89 

Scent, of -------240 

- smallness of the particles of - - - - 241 

effect of the atmosphere on . . - - 242 

influence of the frost on - - - - 246 

difference of, in the same animals - - - - 248 

— — motion the principal cause of. , •.. 249 

Somervile's opinion of. 251 

Beckford's opinion of. ibid 

——— rich land favourable to 254 

Influence of the wind on 255 

— ^ erroneous notion respecting the, of different animals 256 

Shoulder, lameness in the 112 

Sickness, remedy for 82 

Smell, the sense of, in dogs 41 

— — to recover the sense of. 80 

Sore feet 79 

Speed and music, of. 250 

Sportsmen, of the old Norman 15, 14, 15, 16 

Sprains 75 

Stag, chase of a, by Richard 1 255 

Stag hound, the 39 

Stag hounds, the Earl of Derby's 44, 232 

Stag hunting * 231 

31^ INDEX. 


Stag Hunting, ancient method of. 233 

of Queen Elizabeth 234 

St. Clair, William de, extraordinary chase by 236 

Stomach, foul ^^ 

Style of fox hounds running ^°^ 

Swellings '^ 


Talbot, the ^^* 

Terriers, of the sort best suited for foxhunting ^05 

Thorns, for extracting '^ 


Wager, an extraordinary 2j6 

Wanton, an extraordinary fox hound bitch 3^ 

Warren hares. 
Warrens, of hare. 


Weather, uncertainty of the, for hunting 245 

Whelps, the treatment of. ^' 

the naming of. •. ^^ 

Whipper-in, duty of the ^JP 

White-hart-silver ^^^ 

Wolf-hunting in France 257 

. terms employed in '"'^ 

dogs best adapted for 265 

Wolf, manner of dislinguiihing the male from the female 259 

of training dogs to hunt the 262, 267 

trying for the • • 264 

hounds not eager in the pursuit of. -t)5 

habits of the V" ^^^ 

mode of ascertaining whether the hound is on the right scent 

of the If 

of the discovery of a 269 

method of killing the 270 

method of hunting and finding the 271,273 

method of inducing the, to break cover 272 

foims observed at the death of the 275 

manner of placing greyhounds for the 269 

the blooding of hounds to ••• 274 

dogs wounded by the 280 

. chase, description of a 2/G 

Wolves, when they are in heat 259 

. the littering of. 260 

places where they litter 261 

Worming puppies ^" 

Worms ^^ 

Wounds, and to stop an effusion of blood '" 

contused ' ' 


Yellows, the '" 

Young hounds, management of. ^ _ 

Z of entering ^28, 133,137 

of blooding ^^^ 

Webster Family li'omry of Veterinary Medicine 
Cornmlniis School of Veterinary Medicine at 
Tufts University 
200 Westboro Road 
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